PCB Shielding: What You Should Know

5 min read
26 December 2022

When it comes to pcb shielding, there are many different things to take into account. These include the how the pcb shielding is utilised, how long it is used for, how thick it is, and other factors. The ability of the pcb shielding to survive the strain of a high-speed EMI environment, however, is the key factor to be taken into account.

metallic ink

Compared to copper or other common materials, silver ink is a substance used in PCB shielding that gives more flexibility. This is a particularly wise decision for applications requiring dynamic bend. Additionally, it can aid in reducing the price of EMI shielding for flexible PCBs.

A less expensive alternative to copper or other materials for shields is silver ink. They may not always be the greatest option for flexible PCBs with regulated impedance designs, though. Additionally, they are unable to manipulate impedance to the same degree as metal silver ink.

A flex circuit needs additional layers of ink in order to provide electrical separation using a shield. These layers create a connection between the parent shield and ground layer. Applying ink to the coverlay surface and then laminating it with another coverlay can create the extra layers.

Tin-coated steel

Tin-plated steel works well as a PCB shielding material. It is inexpensive, has excellent solderability, and high levels of corrosion resistance.

The most typical material for shielding below 100 MHz is tin-plated steel. A thin, almost lead-free coating is provided by the tin-plated layer. This offers the highest level of soldering effectiveness.

PCB Shielding: What You Should Know

The ideal metal for high-frequency shielding is copper. Because of its capacity to attenuate magnetic waves, copper is a suitable choice. It is more expensive than other alloys, though.

In shielding applications, nickel silver is a common alternative. For some uses, including medical gadgets, it is the perfect answer. Despite the price, it frequently performs worse than other materials.

Pre-tin plated steel is a superior alternative. Even though it doesn't have as much of nickel's corrosion resistance, it has a low hundreds permeability value. Additionally, it operates well in the lower GHz range.

EMI seals

There are many different options to pick from if you need an efficient EMI gasket for PCB shielding. Understanding the applications, materials, and environmental effects can help you make the best decision.

Data corruption from electrical surges is avoided by utilising EMI shielding materials. They are frequently used to shield other electronic equipment, computer parts, and computers from electromagnetic interference. However, they can also be utilised in a wide range of other applications, such as those for medical and mobile equipment.

EMI gaskets can be produced utilising a variety of fabrication processes. These processes include extrusion, die cutting, water jet cutting, and compression moulding. Geometries can range from hollow Os to semi-standard shapes, among others.

The most effective shielding performance has been demonstrated to be achieved with electrically conductive elastomer materials. Elastomers are immune to corrosion, unlike metals.

EMI movie

Increasing the board's thickness is one of the most frequent problems with PCB shielding. Concerns about mechanical breakdowns and reliability may arise as a result of the added thickness. Additionally, the additional cost may be significant.

Circuit boards function worse when there is electromagnetic interference (EMI). Electrical pulses are to blame for this interference, which is a major reason why electronics break down.

For the sake of safeguarding delicate electronic designs, EMI shielding is necessary. Either regular holes or enclosures can be used to implement it.

Flex circuit boards are shielded using various materials. Elastomer, plastics, and metal are some of these materials. The needs of the specific design determine the best EMI shielding material to use.

PCB Shielding: What You Should Know

Shields made of metal work exceptionally well to block EMI. Metals are however prone to corrosion. As an alternative, conductive paints or polymers can be used to produce EMI shielding.

Shields protect

PCBs have shielding coverings to reduce electromagnetic interference (EMI). To protect them from electromagnetic emissions, these components are typically positioned above one or more other components on a printed circuit board. They can be used to prevent harm to delicate electronic devices like radios and cell phones.

PCB shielding covers come in a variety of designs. Tinplate, nickel silver, and stainless steel are a few of the most popular varieties.

The ideal material for shielding below 100 MHz is tin-plated steel. It is advised to use tin-plated copper for shielding over 200 MHz. To be sure the material you select is appropriate for your purpose, you should consult your supplier.

A metal shield is a fantastic technique to improve EMI defence. It accomplishes this by enclosing enclosed RF components in a Faraday cage.


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