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The Demands of 5G on Printed Circuits

5G base stations, modules and components depend on robust printed circuits boards (PCB) for seamless high frequency management. PCB performance testing can help increase their reliability.

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The differences in 5G performance demands from the core PCB perspective — versus 4G LTE — cannot be overstated. Reliance on the millimeter wave spectrum (mm-Wave) in the 30-300GHz range and integrated antenna designs in 5G printed circuits will challenge the speed and reliability support of huge data rates over smaller distances across significant numbers of base stations.

Faster data rates and the sheer volume of big data for extreme 5G performance will demand a step-change technology solution in how PCBs are designed, constructed and tested. 5G carriers, module manufacturers, and server and infrastructure device makers will drive these crucial and customized performance parameters for printed circuit response.

5G challenges traditional PCB design, construction and reliability

Network designers and PCB manufacturers must align with 5G-defining challenges versus the physical reality of creating PCBs that deliver demanded performance no matter where or when the network component is engaged. Standard PCB performance prediction testing will not meet the 5G reliability criteria. OEMs and PCB manufacturers must come together to drive a new normal of customized testing to confidently understand how a PCB component will handle the environmental, mechanical and electrical reliability needs of 5G.

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