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Open product model eases PCB design to manufacturing

Posted: 14 Sep 2015     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Mentor Graphics  product model  PCB design  manufacturing  EDA 

Mentor Graphics Corp. has rolled out the latest version of its ODB++ intelligent product model, a single and open data structure for transferring PCB designs into data for fabrication, assembly and test. The version 8.1 of the ODB++ product model format claims to offer a unique virtual documentation feature that seamlessly translates all data files, drawings and documents from PCB design through the manufacturing flow, stated the company.

This open product model format eliminates the need to create and validate disparate documentation content, supporting all electronic design automation (EDA) tool flows. Users of the ODB++ version will be able to share all the necessary manufacturing instructions as electronic data, making new product introduction (NPI) more efficient for all partners in the supply chain, added Mentor.

The idea behind virtual documentation content is to replace a disparate set of drawings, documents and instructions with data elements that allow the recipient tool to automate the planning and execution of the manufacturing process preparation actions. An example would be to define the soldermask finish colour within the ODB++ product model so that a PCB fabricator can automatically generate the process, material and routing instructions for that individual factory.

The ODB++ product model also includes support for EDA-based design net connectivity shorts. In many designs, one or more nets are intentionally shorted into a single net; the ODB++ product model now carries that net attribute so that all downstream processes can be streamlined and automated. The lack of such net characterisation has been a limitation of existing data formats, resulting in wasted efforts between design and manufacturing.

Additionally, content for rigid-flex buildup zones to define regions within the basic stack-up (either unique or within the same region) on the board can be carried forward into analysis and in the actual material-based stack-up definition. This feature delivers accurate impedance calculations, using tools such as the Frontline InStack for this capability. By accurately identifying the physical boundary of different stack-up areas for a rigid-flex circuit, the correct DFM rules can be applied automatically and rigid-flex circuit manufacturers can easily and accurately calculate the impedance values for the circuit using their choice of materials.





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