Thinking about implementing flex technology in your design? Here are four key reasons to design with flex...
Today's market for electronic interconnect, demands an increased number of I/Os with a high degree of performance and reliability in increasingly miniaturized packages. Constant consideration to further reduce package size is required to support tomorrow’s sophisticated product requirements. Being inherently thin, lightweight, and flexible, flex interconnect facilitates miniaturization, making it a prime candidate for portable devices and applications where space is at a minimum. Flexible PCBs have innate mechanical and electrical properties that make them an ideal selection for emerging applications.
Flex circuits are a reliable alternative to conventional wiring. The thin flat conductors and insulation that make up flex circuits provide more surface area than traditional wiring resulting in better heat dissipation and current carrying capacity. Flex circuits offer repeatable reliability and facilitate the replacement of heavy bulky wiring harnesses.
Flex circuit technology allows for three-dimensional configurations. Flex circuits have the ability to be formed around obstructions through thin openings and into confined areas. Utilizing Flex circuits for three-dimensional applications increases the reliability and integrity of the electrical connection when connecting to peripheral devices. This is achieved by removing unnecessary plated through-holes or surface-mount pads, which are created to house mechanical connectors.
Uniform dielectric and conductor thicknesses, favorable dielectric constant and increasingly finer line and spacing geometry provide improved impedance control required for dense, high-speed signal routing.
If the above factors don't give you reason enough to move to flex circuits, you should also consider the costs involved. Generally speaking, you really do get more for your money with flexible circuit technology. It is not uncommon to replace several electronics components with a single flexible circuit that provides equal to or better performance for your system.