The Back-panel PCB serves as a backbone for the electronic system, providing a single point of connection for various electronic modules, daughterboards, and other PCBs. It typically contains many high-speed traces, connectors, and power distribution planes that allow for fast and efficient communication between the active sub-boards. The majority of Back-panel PCBs doesn´t contain any active components.
What is Back Panel PCB?
A back-panel PCB is often compared to a personal computer’s motherboard since both contain connections (slots) for sub-boards and allows for communication between all connected boards. The main difference is that the Motherboard used in computer systems contains active component and processors and connections (slots) for expansions boards, where the Back-panel often only contain connections (slots) to interconnect several active boards in larger Server systems.
Line and space: Back panel PCBs often require impedance-controlled traces which typically mean smaller trace and spacing widths with sizes as small as 0.0025, 0.003 or 0.004 inches (62, 75, 100 microns). Most manufacturers use laser direct imaging (LDI) and vacuum Develop-Etch-Strip (DES) lines to etch the fine patterns.
Vias: Vias are mainly mechanical drilled with min. size approximately 0,3mm. Low possible on request.
Layer count: up to 60 layers
PCB material: We normally recommend using mid or high Tg. material for Back-panel PCBs. Many applications with controlled trace impedances, require special high-speed materials with low signal loss dissipation factor (Df) & low epsilon relative, dielectric constant (εr Dk)
Surface finish: The Back-panel surface treatment depends upon the connector assembly method: Press-fit requires HASL, LF HASL or Immersion Sn. THT and SMT technology requires HASL, LF HASL, OSP, ENIG, Immersion Sn or Immersion Ag.
Active or Passive?
There are two types of back-panel systems: active and passive. Active back panels contain the slots as well as the necessary circuitry to manage and control all the communication between the slots. In contrast, passive back panels contain almost no computing circuitry.
Thick and rigid with many layers
Back-panels often have a considerable size to support and interconnection of several sub-boards in a rack-system. The extreme number of wires required to interconnect the sub-boards often results in high amount of layers. This makes Back-panels thicker and more Rigid than most PCB. This is a benefit since the PCB needs to be stiff enough to support the insertion force plugging the sub-boards into the back-panel connectors. Rigid-Multilayers are the most common technology used to develop back panels, but Flex-Rigid can also be developed in the case of special cabinet solution.
Do you need Back-Panel PCB's?
Back-panels are the backbone for any larger computing or server system. It offers a firm and robust mechanical platform allow low-ohm high-speed interconnection between all the sub-boards the complex electronic system.
|Back Panels Feature
|ICAPE Group back panel technical specification
|Up to 60 layers.
|High TG, High-Speed and low loss materials
|Base Copper Thickness
|From 1/3 Oz base to 2 Oz finished thickness
|Minimum track & spacing
|0.062mm / 0.075mm
|Surface finishes available
|HASL, LF HASL, OSP, ENIG, Immersion Tin, Immersion Silver.
|Minimum mechanical drill
|0,3mm (Advanced 0.2mm)
|1,6mm – 6.0mm. (Advanced 8mm)
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