OrCAD Whitepapers

Understanding DFM and Its Role in PCB Layout

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©2015 Cadence Design Systems, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide. Cadence, the Cadence logo, Allegro, and OrCAD are registered trademarks and the OrCAD logo is a trademark of Cadence Design Systems, Inc. in the United States and other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. 2381 04 /14 SA / DM / PDF www.orcad.com White Paper worse and more costly – lost time-to-market. Had the design engineer had the ability to perform his own DFM analysis prior to prototype, the same issues could have been detected and addressed in engineering and incorporated in the PCB design where they belong, lowering the cost, maintaining design intent, and ensuring that follow-on builds also work correctly. Just a few more minutes with the design in engineering would have prevented a whole design and manufacturing iteration, and the costs associated with it. So what are DFM issues? Mostly these are issues in the PCB topology that create adverse effects in manufacturing and are typically not detected in the engineering CAD software that creates the design. The table below is a short list of typical DFM issues that pass detection in the CAD system but result in PCB failures in the real world. to procure and, more importantly, maintain. These tools are also much easier for the everyday design engineer to use and deploy in the PCB layout process, without really having to be a manufac- turing expert. Several of these new offerings allow users to model the rules that their intended manufacturer uses, to ensure that PCBs can be built by a particular manufacturer, and then rule sets can be switched to model different manufacturers when the design moves from prototype to production. Because these tools are designed as DFM tools and are free from the constraints of PCB CAD, they can detect problems in a design that are not supported by core PCB CAD tools. Good DFM ensures that a design not only performs electrically as expected, but can be manufactured successfully in high volume quantities without increasing cost or risk, or adding unnecessary time to the design process. These are but a short list of DFM issues. Good DFM tools will analyze for not only the above issues, but also many more that most PCB design systems are not architecturally designed to detect. Until recently, having DFM analysis in-house has been very costly, creating an obstacle for many companies to adopt a pre-manufacturing DFM process. Previous DFM analysis software also came with a very high price point, ran on expensive hardware, and required dedicated users to run the analysis, making it very difficultfor adoption in the majority of the electronics market. The good news is that more mainstream DFM tools are now available in the market and can provide the same in-depth analysis, but instead have a very low cost of ownership Sales, Technical Support, and Training For the latest product or release information, visit us at www.orcad.com or contact your local Cadence Channel Partner. The OrCAD product line is owned by Cadence Design Systems, Inc., and is supported by a worldwide network of Cadence Channel Partners (VARs). For sales, technical support, or training, contact your local channel partner. For a complete list of autho- rized channel partners, visit www.orcad.com/CCP-Listing.

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