Types of PCB Assembly Technologies

 printed circuit board assembly

A printed circuit board, usually called a PCB, is made up of a bare board and a variety of different electronic components. Once these components have been permanently attached to each other and the board, they create a functional PCB. This completed board is usually called a printed circuit board assembly.

Types of PCB Assembly Technologies
There are two main types of assemblies used in printed circuit boards today: Surface mount: Usually called SMT, this means that the parts are simply soldered onto pads n the board. Through-hole: This is the traditional and older way of connecting parts to a board, and leads get pushed through pre-made holes in the board.  printed circuit board assembly

Surface mount technology has been around for decades, but it is still newer than through-hole. It is usually suggested for smaller and lighter components. The advantages of this approach include the fact that it is usually cheaper to do, the parts are less expensive, and it can be used to create smaller and lighter boards with connections that are much closer together. One other big advantage is that this type of assembly can use both sides of the circuit board. Also, just because these parts can be fixed to the board closer together, there may be some improvement in signal and performance. Finally, SMT can be used to create the smaller and lighter boards that are demanded by today's small electronics. Through-hole technology can create a more robust board. That's why it is still used for larger components. It's also suggested for boards that may have to stand up to more shaking or bumping. Very often, prototypes may be created with through-hole technology, even if the final design will also include SMT technology.

 printed circuit board assembly

While SMT can be done in a workshop or even at home, it involves working with some toxic chemicals and processes that some prefer to leave to the professionals.

 printed circuit board assembly

With through-hole technology, the leads of the parts get soldered to the other side of the board. That's why only one side of the board can be used for mounting. Designers should know that choosing to use this technology may create more robust boards, but they will always be larger and heavier than SMT assemblies.