Have you ever stopped to think how the food on your table got there? When you take a close look behind the scenes, you’ll see that the Internet of Things (machine to machine) technology is a key component of the growing, harvesting, shipping, manufacturing and preparation of our food.
IoT isn’t new, but it’s something businesses soon won’t be able to operate without. Increasing efficiency and safety only scratches the surface of what the technology represents. From agriculture and the food industry in general, to oil and gas, to industrial manufacturing and beyond – IoT is poised to redefine how businesses currently produce, refine, transport and create the food and products we buy on a daily basis.
Here are just a few examples of what IoT is capable of. It can:
• Monitor temperatures, levels and pressures
• Track shipments and vehicles with incredible accuracy (supply chain)
• Automate and maintain equipment, appliances and tanks
• Maintain regulatory compliance (including HACCP)
To see IoT in action, watch our latest videos [INSERT VIDEOS] or take advantage of our insider reports created in partnership with Frost & Sullivan. Together they’ll help you see the many advantages and opportunities IoT represents.
• Read: Research firm Frost & Sullivan discusses best practices in IoT exploration and implementation in The Internet of Things: Growth opportunities and Essentials for Success. It looks at the numbers in Enhancing Business Productivity with the Internet of Things and discusses best practices and key capabilities to look for in a vendor in IoT Made Simple: Selecting the Right Partner for IoT
• Read: The true value of IoT is in its potential to change the world
• Read: Resolving business challenges with the Internet of Things
• Read: The Business Transformation: How the Internet of Things is going to change the way you work
• Read: What to consider when implementing an IoT solution
See how Rogers IoT solutions can turn little things into big opportunities. Get started with a complimentary IoT Readiness Assessment. rogers.com/DiscoverIoT Source
IoT PCB things to consider for Startups
Given that IoT appliances are so fresh new, you would consider that getting an IoT printed circuit board (PCB) project off the ground starts by reinventing the wheel and finding your way through a whole lot of technical headaches. That is most certainly not true.
However it doesn’t indicate IoT startups have a obvious way to fame and fortune. Facing them is quite a lot of design and manufacturing factors that are completely unique to these small products. These points to consider ought to be factored in for the new IoT product to achieve its purpose.
On the plus side, it’s vital for IoT startups to figure out that the basic foundation for a successful awesome product exists. This indicates experience and knowhow regarding the design, fabrication and assembly of these kinds of superior products are accessible. And the best advice is for judicious IoT product business men and innovators to heed the recommendation that encountered electronics manufacturing services or EMS companies have to offer. These businesses in addition to their engineering employees have previously done the job with revolutionary IoT businesses in Silicon Valley entering the beginning of this surfacing segment.
The PCB of an IoT unit is a unique beast than the traditional one, which is extensively larger and flat. IoT gadgets, alternatively, are comprised mostly of either rigid-flex or flex circuit assemblies, which come with their own sets of design layout, fabrication and assembly points to consider and detailed aspects.
A top thing to consider is to hunt for experienced designers who’ve accomplished numerous rigid-flex PCB designs. PCB space for an IoT unit is scarce. So you want the designer to have direct layout practical experience to successfully design important components on that limited room.
Also, nearly all IoT systems aren’t stationary; they bear significant movement and rotating. Right here, the experienced designer plays a primary role in computing bend ratios and lifecycle iterations as a critical part of a design. Other important design layout points to consider include signal trace thickness, number of rigid and flex circuit layers, copper weight and stiffener placement. Stiffeners are utilized on flex circuits to guarantee components connected to the flex circuit remain properly in position to protect itself from movement.
A second aspect to consider is through-hole component positioning in rigid-flex circuits. What makes that key? A great deal of IoT appliances are founded on surface mount device placement. But nonetheless , there could be through-hole components, which are in most cases affixed to either the rigid part or the flex portion of the board. Through-hole components are normally employed to connect input/output or I/O signals to the outer world. Like that, those signals can show up utilizing an LCD or LED monitor. Through-hole component placement is a key concern in an IoT item since when applied on the flex section of the board, proper stiffeners need to be designed and applied for proper assembly.
Last of all in the layout category, the high temperature that components generate has to be looked at. IoT systems are progressively more difficult with rigid-flex and flex circuits featuring up to 12 – 14 layers. Several systems are digital. But nonetheless , more and more analog devices are being utilized in IoT devices. Analog circuitry makes somewhat more heat than digital ones. It really means heat expansion and also contraction rate must be evaluated. In tech lingo, that is called the Coefficient of Thermal Expansion or CTE and the effective remedy for it.
Choosing the right fabricator is important and is linked to the EMS firm you have picked. The fabricator you desire require IoT PCB fabrication experience. Amongst important points to consider here are ensuring intense adhesions between layers on both rigid and flex circuit sides, comprehending all the vital calculations and getting a good know-how about when current moves from the rigid side to the flex side.
These fabricators also need to get an in-depth comprehension of amazingly compact parts for instance 0201 as well as 00105 device packages, package-on-package, and the use of fine-pitch ball-grid array or BGA packaged devices.
Furthermore, they ought to have knowledge of designing boards with fairly tight tolerances in terms of footprint for those types of BGA devices, in terms of up-to-date capabilities like laser direct imaging for putting the solder mask on the board. They ought to have laser drills for via drilling with sizes of 5 mils or under simply because these IoT devices could be so compact that a common drill size of 5 to 8 mils would possibly not be adequate. They could need to go to a 3 mil, which means you will need to have an superior laser drilling capability indoors.
In case you’re placing via-in-pad, it’s a easy way to use the small real estate which is available on the rigid-flex board, nevertheless , it presents trouble for assembly. If vias are not fully planar or flat in shape, it may be an obstacle over the assembly of those tiny BGA packaged devices. That’s because non-planar surfaces could put in danger the integrity of solder joints.
Sometimes via in pads leave bumps in cases where they’re not cleaned correctly after putting the vias and gold finish on the top. If there are bumps, then the solder joints in the assembly for those tiny BGA balls in those IoT devices would not be an excellent joint. It may create occasional connections, which might be a greater issue to address and improve. It all boils down to which EMS firm you’re working with because they’re the ones who will select the fabrication house to make a profitable IoT device for you.
It’s vital to pay a visit to experienced EMS companies that have efficiently assembled IoT and wearable PCBs because they have specialized tooling and fixtures already available, which are important for assembly in order to guarantee components are placed appropriately, exactly and the printing is carried out perfectly.
Printing could be a concern for IoT devices. If it’s a rigid-flex board, then you will find there’s a change between thicknesses of the rigid and flex circuit portions, which suggests a special fixture is required to retain the complete rigid-flex board planar or utterly flat to help effective printing to be realized.
Startups should be set to find the proper manufacturing partners and EMS firms. By doing this they can guarantee they’ve adequate experience beforehand to get the multitude of design, fabrication and assembly details effectively performed since they are essential to a profitable and prompt IoT product launch.