UV Laser Depaneling: Does Edge Charring Really Affect Conductivity?


“What’s that discoloration on the edges?”

That’s the question asked most often with an element of shock and surprise by people who are using UV laser depaneling machines for the first time to cut PCBs from FR4 and polyimide. The simple answer is that some edge charring occurs on thicker materials like FR4 and the “discoloration” is a carbon residue produced on each pass of the laser. In most cases, the edge charring is just a cosmetic issue that does not affect PCB quality. The biggest concern is that the carbon dust may be conductive and may somehow contaminate or short-circuit components populating the board.

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Protecting Intellectual Property with In-house PCB Prototyping

Some of you may remember the days of sketching your breakthrough ideas for new products on a napkin at a diner or in a spiral-bound notebook on your desk. There it was – the fruit of your imagination on paper, which you kept in a safe place away from competitor’s eyes until you could push it through to production. Today, your imagination comes to life more often on a computer screen or tablet with a design schematic ready to send out to a third-party for rapid PCB prototyping.

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Don’t Let Your PCB Design Dreams Die – Rapid Prototype Them

That nirvana state of ideation – when the virtual light bulb comes on over your head and illuminates a new PCB design for a next-generation product – makes you want to jump up and create it NOW! That’s where PCB prototyping can put you on the fast track from ideation to creation of new and advanced PCB designs. There’s nothing more satisfying to a designer than holding a working prototype in your hands, testing it and seeing if it works the way you envisioned it. Right?

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Looking to truly complete your PCB engineering lab?

Release your creativity with an in-house prototyping machine.

Ever see those posts about “life hacks” – how to use common everyday things in new, creative ways? Like using a gum wrapper and a battery to spark a flame. (A bit useless unless you’re stuck in the woods, but you get the picture.) At LPKF, we see our engineering customers using our PCB prototyping machines for a lot more than just what they were designed for. What’s more, they are saving significant time while boosting their creativity by not having to send out prototype jobs to a PCB or other fabricating vendor.

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