BPA Articles in the Press

The Smart Grid Opportunity

The PCB Magazine/iConnect007 Publications, October 2014

The growing demand for electrical power coupled with ageing infrastructure is placing considerable strain on the electrical power grid. In addtion, migration of electric power generation to the periphery of the grid is presenting new challenges for load balancing and synchronization. The continuing need for greater efficiency in electric power utilization and control also means that control systems are in the process of migrating towards individual loads. As a result, greater intelligence is required throughout the grid, from point of power generation to point of power consumption. This combination of power and intelligence is presenting both challenges and opportunities to the electronics designer: challenges because small, cost-effective intelligent power management modules need to combine digital logic with mains power, and opportunity because new and innovative board level technologies will be required to meet this challenge.

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Learning Curve Theory and Innovation

Circuit World/Emerald Group Publishing, Ltd. 17 October 2013

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to look at innovation and the tension which arises between proprietorship and standardization.

Design/methodology/approach – The paper presents an analysis of the learning curve theory in relation to the printed circuit board industry.

Findings – The measurable impact of the learning curve will be different depending on a number of factors commonly found in the printed circuit industry – degree of process maturity/automation, run lengths, and presence of customized elements requiring modifications to process flow, materials, or procedures.

Originality/value – There is no escape from continuing and inexorable downward price pressure from entrenched expectations and trends. A clear understanding of how these work will confer a competitive advantage to the strategist concerned with bringing innovative technologies to the marketplace.

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Selective MiB Thermal and Power Pathways for Automotive Applications

The PCB Magazine/iConnect007 Publications, October 2013

MiB has been used for over 20 years in automotive systems beginning with the first generations of engine control modules (ECM). However, area solutions such as MCPCB are giving way to selective enhancement: providing thermal and high current pathways only where needed. This confines the added cost of MiB only to those nets where needed, leading to optimization of the cost/function relationship of the board. This article illustrates several selective MiB techniques, as well as the background rationale for these developments.

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New Circuit Board Technologies Meet the Challenge of Digital Power

EDN Network/UBM Tech, 15 July 2013

In their just-published report: “Metal in the Board – Opportunities for Printed Circuit Boards Providing Enhanced Thermal and Power Management,” BPA Consulting have identified new families of power semiconductors which require new approaches in board design for thermal and power management. A number of board level solutions are emerging in response.

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Pricing and the Technology Life Cycle

iConnect007 Publications, July 2013

How much is a product going to sell for next year if you’ve never made one before?.. Even without the distortions caused by greatly differing cost structures around the world, the economic impact of yield and efficiency improvements during the life of manufactured products and systems predicted by learning curve theory is an inevitable part of the technology life cycle.

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Metal in the Board: Meeting the Challenge of Digital Power

Penton Media / Power Electronics Magazine, 29 May 2013

New generations of miniaturized power packages require thermal and electrical pathways into the board. This article outlines these developments and a design example for a new and innovative printed circuit approach for a 150 – 300A light electric vehicle powerpack.

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Digital Power: A New Game in Town

iConnect007 Publications, 13 May 2013

The conductive pathways required by SMT power semiconductors are giving rise to new concepts in board design and construction, concepts which represent “enabling” technologies, because, without them, some designs are impossible to realize cost-effectively. Based on actual case histories, this article draws parallels between what’s happening now in Digital Power and the move from peripheral to array packages that drove the HDI revolution.

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Printed Circuits for Digital Power- A New and Growing Opportunity

EIPC- European Institute for Printed Circuits Speed News, 06 May 2013

Although electronics technology is evolving all the time, every once in a while a change occurs at some level which drives a whole new set of rules. Such a change is happening now in Power Electronics and is offering a “once in an era” chance for circuit board suppliers, materials and equipment companies, as well as new design and product opportunities for OEMs.

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Digital Power Poised to Drive New PCB Developments

iConnect007 PCB News, 02 May 2013

Improvements in junction efficiency mean more lumens per watt for LEDs, while leading to dramatic reductions in overall size of the power devices which are driving the revolution in Digital Power. For these small packages the best way to get the heat out is into the substrate, and the game changer this represents is driving a new business opportunity: Metal “in” the Board.

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Metal in the Board: Applying HDI to Digital Power

iConnect007 Publications, 02 February 2013

New generations of power semiconductors are providing opportunities for expansion of the role of the circuit board beyond mounting and interconnection towards actuation- making things happen. “Metal in the Board” technologies accomplish this and are compatible with interconnection densities ranging from single layer to HDI.

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Printed Circuit Board Technologies for Thermal Management

Circuit World/Emerald Group Publishing, 20 January 2013

A short introductory overview to the concept of “Metal in the Board” (MiB) circuit technologies for use in thermal management applications

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Metal in the Board – A Return to the Future

iConnect Publications, June 2012

Printed wiring boards replaced wiring for point-to-point interconnections in electronic circuits. As more and more functionality has been embedded in solid-state devices, board technology has proven to be adaptable, not only enabling the interconnection of the many different types of components and packages that have evolved, but also providing controlled environments for managing signal characteristics as well as a robust and versatile mounting platform.

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