In metal core PCBs, designers may choose from three different materials for the PCB core: copper, aluminum, or iron-based PCBs. These materials are ideal for high-powered electronic components that require efficient heat dissipation, leading to an increase in demand for metal core PCBs.
In high-power and high-frequency PCB designs, designers often use copper-based PCBs due to their processing capabilities. However, to handle high current flow, such designs require a high current carrying capacity, which necessitate a thick copper foil. Typically, copper foils with thicknesses ranging from 35μm to 280μm are utilized.
PCB Manufacturers can etch copper-based PCBs into fine patterns and subsequently transform them into the shape of a convex platform. Connection to the platform can dramatically enhance both heat and grounding dissipation. Thus, this must be considered while designing these PCBs.
What Is a Copper-based PCB ?
Copper-based PCBs are the most expensive in the metal PCB category, known for their superior thermal conductivity surpassing aluminum and iron-based PCBs. This makes them ideal for sophisticated communication equipment designs, architectural decoration industries, and high-frequency circuit designs, as they can endure extreme low and high temperatures.
Copper-based PCBs come in a range of varieties such as immersion gold copper-based PCB, silver plating copper-based PCB, high-air soldering layering (HASL) Copper-based PCB, anti-oxidation copper-based PCB, and more.
Due to the high current demands on copper-based PCB layers, thicker copper foils are utilized, which necessitate thermal conductivity insulating layers. These layers are primarily composed of a blend of epoxy resin, silicon powder, and aluminum oxide.
Copper-based PCBs provide several advantages, including a low thermal resistance of 0.15, and good viscoplastic properties. They can withstand thermal aging, thermal and mechanical stress, and have a crucial role in dispersing heat and shielding and grounding of the copper-based PCBs. The metal substrate is an essential support component of the copper-based PCB, facilitating efficient heat conduction during mechanical processes such as drilling, punching, and cutting.
Substrate of Copper Core PCB
Copper PCB, also known as copper substrate PCB, copper base PCB, or copper-clad PCB, consists of an insulating layer substrate and a Copper circuit layer on top. Although polypropylene (PP) is an excellent insulator between the base layer and the circuit layers, it hinders heat sinking. In comparison, copper has superior thermal conductivity over aluminum base PCBs. Hence, regular copper base PCBs have higher electrical conductivity than aluminum PCBs of the same thickness and number of layers.
Our printed circuit board manufacturing factory produces various copper PCBs tailored to suit our customers’ needs. These PCBs are appropriate for power supply and high-power LED applications, such as 1000W+ lighters.
In the field of LED lighting, there are four different types of copper circuit boards:
● The direct thermal pathway without a dielectric layer is an aluminum-copper PCB. This type of PCB is designed to provide a direct thermal pathway without an insulating dielectric layer between the aluminum base and copper traces, enabling quicker dissipation of heat. The aluminum substrate provides excellent thermal conductivity properties, while the copper traces enable efficient electrical current carry capacity. Consequently, these PCBs are ideal for high power LED lighting and other applications requiring efficient heat dissipation and high power handling capabilities. Our PCB manufacturing facility produces these aluminum-copper PCBs to meet the specific requirements and demands of our clients.
● The COB Copper PCB (Chip on Board Copper PCB) is specifically designed to allow for a direct thermal sink to the copper substrate from the LED chip. In this configuration, the LED chip is directly mounted on the copper substrate, allowing for optimal heat dissipation. This design is particularly suited for high-power LED applications where effective heat dissipation is a critical factor in ensuring optimal performance.
As a specialized PCB manufacturing company, we produce COB Copper PCBs customized to meet the specific requirements of our clients. Our COB Copper PCBs are ideal for use in high-power LED applications where efficient thermal management is essential to ensure maximum performance and longevity.
● The Normal stack-up Copper PCB with a Core PCB is fabricated utilizing a conventional construction scheme that includes a copper trace layer and insulating dielectric layers. Additionally, a copper core PCB layer is inserted to improve the thermal conductivity of the PCB to up to 12 W/m.k. This construction is particularly suited for high-power applications where thermal management is a vital factor to ensure maximum performance and longevity.
● The proposed setup features an unmediated thermal pathway, with the absence of any dielectric layer underlying the pertinent thermal pad.
Copper Base PCB Design Considerations
When designing a Copper Base PCB, the following considerations should be taken into account:
● Thermal management: Since Copper Base PCBs are designed for high-power applications, the ability to manage heat dissipation is critical.
● Electrical and mechanical requirements: The design should meet the necessary electrical and mechanical requirements, including voltage, current, and size.
● Material selection: The choice of materials for the substrate, dielectric layer, and surface finish should be carefully considered, as they will all impact the performance and durability of the PCB.
● Component placement: The placement of the components on the PCB should be carefully considered to ensure optimal heat dissipation and to prevent any interference.
● Ground plane design: The use of a solid ground plane can improve heat dissipation, reduce electrical noise, and provide mechanical support.
● Signal routing: Careful consideration should be given to signal routing to minimize crosstalk, signal degradation, and electromagnetic interference.
● Manufacturing capabilities: The design should be reviewed to ensure that it can be manufactured using standard processes, and that any special manufacturing requirements, such as additional copper plating, can be accommodated.
By taking these considerations into account during the design process, Copper Base PCBs can be optimized for high-performance and durability in high-power applications.
Copper Base PCB Fabrication Process
The fabrication process of Copper Base PCBs typically involves the following steps:
● Preparation of the copper substrate: The copper substrate is cleaned and prepared for the lamination process. The thickness, size, and shape of the substrate are determined based on the specific requirements of the design.
● Lamination: A layer of heat-resistant adhesive is applied to the copper substrate. A layer of insulating material, typically a layer of thermally conductive dielectric material, is then laminated onto the copper substrate.
● Drilling: Holes are drilled into the substrate for component placement and electrical connections.
● Copper plating: A layer of copper is plated onto the surface of the insulating layer, creating the circuit pattern. This step may be repeated multiple times until the desired copper thickness is achieved.
● Photoresist application: A layer of photoresist material is applied to the copper surface and exposed to UV light.
● Etching: The exposed copper is etched away using a chemical solution, leaving behind the desired circuit pattern.
● Solder mask application: A layer of solder mask is applied to protect the circuit from environmental factors and to prevent solder bridging.
● Surface finish: The surface finish is applied to protect the exposed copper traces from oxidation and to ensure proper solderability.
● Electrical testing: The PCB is electrically tested to ensure the correct functionality and performance of the circuit.
These steps may vary slightly depending on the specific manufacturer and the complexities of the design, but they generally provide a good overview of the Copper Base PCB fabrication process.
Copper Base PCB Manufacturing Capabilities of JarnisTech
|Specifications||Copper Base PCB Capabilities|
|Copper base PCB Layers||1-8Layer|
|Delivery Time||3-6Working days|
|Order PCB Quantity||1 to 10,000+ pieces|
|PCB/PCBA quality level||IPC-A-600/610 Class 3/2|
|Circuit Layer Copper Thickness||35μm~350μm|
|Via Wall Copper Thickness||20μm~35μm|
|Surface Finish and Thickness||ENIG: Au 0.0254μm to 0.127μm, Ni 5μm to 6μm|
HASL (LF): 40μm to 100μm
silver plating: Ag 3μm to 8μm
gold plating: Au 0.1μm to 0.5μm, Ni 4μm to 6μm
|Minimum punching hole aperture||1.0mm|
|PCB routing tolerance||CNC routing: ±0.1mm, punching: ±0.1mm|
|Minimum drill diameter||0.6mm|
|Minimum solder mask opening||0.35mm|
Therefore, Why You should Choose JarnisTech Fabricating Your Copper-base PCB Project
20 Years Experiences Of Copper Cores PCB Manufacturing
Leveraging over two decades of experience in the copper PCB manufacturing industry, JarnisTech has been committed to delivering exceptional services to clients across a diverse range of LED projects. Our extensive expertise extends from the production of copper and aluminum base PCBs to LED PCBs with FR4. We pride ourselves in being well-equipped with an array of premium-grade raw materials to offer comprehensive solutions tailored to meet your specific project requirements.
● Quality Assurance: At our organization, product quality takes precedence over any other aspect. We demonstrate this by adopting a proactive stance in managing our raw material sourcing program, which we do so by fostering strategic partnerships with reputable, globally-recognized suppliers. To further bolster our quality control processes, our dedicated Quality Assurance Department performs comprehensive checks on all raw materials and finished products with a consistent 100% frequency. These measures guarantee that every product leaving our premises meets stringent quality standards, consistent with our commitment to exceeding our customers’ expectations.
● Technical Support Service: At JarnisTech, our Research and Development team comprises skilled professionals who possess domain expertise and extensive experience in LED lighting technology. Our engineers work alongside you throughout the entire project, providing end-to-end support and tailored solutions that suit your unique requirements. Additionally, we offer comprehensive technical assistance to cater to any queries or concerns you may have. If you require any assistance in LED products, we urge you to contact our overseas sales personnel, who are adept at providing you with top-notch service at all times.
JarnisTech Offers These Conveniences as a Copper Core PCB Manufacturer:
● Can achieve wire bonding and flip-chip for COB LED copper core PCBs.
● One-stop copper PCB fabrication and assembly starting from prototypes to production in bulk.
● One-on-one engineering support and design advice throughout the duration of the project.
● Can fabricate copper core PCBs using an hybrid base: copper/FR4, copper/AlN, and copper/PTFE.
● Copper core PCBs can be designed with different shapes based on the requirements of the application.
The Copper core PCB design process is a critical phase that requires expertise in electrical aspects and PCB fabrication feasibility. At JarnisTech, we are committed to delivering solutions that cater to the most complex and demanding needs of our clients. For all your Copper core PCB fabrication requirements, please reach out to us at [email protected], and we will be more than happy to assist you.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Copper Core PCBs
Copper core PCBs provide numerous advantages and some limitations in select applications. Some of the prominent advantages and disadvantages of Copper Core PCBs include:
Copper Core PCBs Advantages
● Thermal Management: Copper core PCBs efficiently conduct heat away from high-power components, thereby reducing the risk of component damage or failure due to overheating.
● Reliable Performance: Copper core PCBs offer excellent reliability and durability, making them ideal for demanding applications that require high performance and stability.
● Flexibility: Copper core PCBs are available in multiple configurations, including single-sided, double-sided, and multilayer, providing flexibility to the designer for customizing the board layout as per the application requirement.
● Machinability: Copper core PCBs are easy to machine and drill, making them a suitable option for customized designs.
● Cost-Effective: Copper core PCBs provide a cost-effective alternative to ceramic substrates, which are typically more expensive.
Copper Core PCBs Disadvantages
● Design Complexity: Copper core PCBs require careful design to ensure effective thermal management. This makes the design process complex, and not all PCB designers have experience working with Copper core PCBs.
● Difficulty in Repair: Copper core PCBs are challenging to repair when compared to traditional PCBs due to their complex design and heat conduction properties.
● Increased Fabrication Time: Copper core PCBs require additional fabrication steps, including the lamination of the copper substrate with FR4 or other materials, which can increase fabrication time and complexity.
● High Thermal Expansion: Copper core PCBs have high thermal expansion, which can cause reliability issues in high-temperature environments if not managed correctly.
As a result, Copper core PCBs offer substantial thermal management benefits while adding some additional complexity to the design and fabrication process. By weighing the pros and cons of different PCB materials and configurations, designers can make an informed decision when choosing a PCB material for their specific application.
Applications of Copper Core PCBs
The excellent thermal management properties of copper core PCBs make them ideal for a range of high-power and high-reliability applications, including:
● LED Lighting: Copper core PCBs are commonly used in LED lighting products that require efficient heat dissipation to prevent damage to the LED chip and ensure optimal performance and longevity.
● Automotive: Copper core PCBs are used in automotive applications, including engine control modules, powertrain modules, and lighting systems, where high-temperature and high-reliability requirements are paramount.
● Power Electronics: Copper core PCBs are used in power electronic applications such as inverters, converters, and motor drives that require efficient heat management to maintain optimal performance and reliability.
● Aerospace and Defense: Copper core PCBs are utilized in aerospace and defense applications that require high-temperature resistance, thermal conductivity, and reliability.
● Medical Devices: Copper core PCBs are used in medical devices that require high-reliability, such as X-ray machines, CT scanners, and MRI machines.
In a word, Copper core PCBs are suitable for applications where thermal management is critical, and high reliability and durability are necessary. By leveraging these PCBs’ unique advantages, engineers can design for optimal thermal conductivity, while minimizing the risk of device failure due to overheating.
Comparison of Copper Base PCBs with Other PCB types
When compared to other types of PCBs, Copper Base PCBs stand out due to their superior thermal management capabilities. They are able to dissipate heat more effectively than traditional FR4 PCBs, making them ideal for high-power applications. Copper Base PCBs also offer better mechanical strength and stiffness than other types of PCBs, which allows for better reliability and durability over time.
However, Copper Base PCBs can be more expensive to manufacture due to the cost of the copper substrate, which may limit their use in certain applications. Overall, the choice of PCB type depends on the specific needs of the application, but Copper Base PCBs are a good option for high-power and high-heat applications where thermal management is critical.
Future of Copper Base PCB Technology
The future of Copper Base PCB technology is likely to include advancements in materials, manufacturing, and design that will improve thermal management and increase power densities. This may include the use of new materials such as graphene and nanocarbon composites, as well as the development of more efficient and precise manufacturing processes.
Additionally, new design techniques will be developed to optimize heat dissipation and reduce energy consumption. Overall, the future of Copper Base PCB technology is promising, and it is expected to continue to play a critical role in the development of high-performance electronic devices and systems.
Copper Core PCB Solutions With JarnisTech
JarnisTech is a renowned manufacturer of custom copper core circuit boards that cater to your specific requirements. We understand that high-power environments mandate circuit boards with superior heat resistance, and we provide tailored solutions to meet these exacting demands.
Our copper core circuit boards are engineered to deliver exceptional high-temperature conductivity, boosting the performance of your devices. We invite you to contact us to explore the benefits of our specialized PCB manufacturing expertise that can deliver on your unique project requirements.
At JarnisTech, we leverage our engineering capabilities to fulfill any fabrication requirement, no matter how complex. We conduct rigorous design rule checks (DRC) and design for manufacture (DFM) tests to guarantee the highest quality results. Our experienced team will collaborate with you to develop a PCB layout that not only meets your specifications but also efficiently utilizes space, streamlines the manufacturing process, and adheres to safety regulations.
Our manufacturing processes are optimized for efficiency and compliance, ensuring that the final product is of the highest quality and delivered within the desired timeframe. Overall, we provide end-to-end PCB manufacturing solutions, emphasizing safety, cost-efficiency, and compliance.