The advantages and disadvantages of FPC

A: Disadvantages:

1. Original cost is high

Because the FPC is designed and made for special application, the cost of circuit design, wiring and photographic plate is high. Except special need, we’d better not use them.

2. The modification and correction is difficult

Once FPCs are made, if we want to modify, we have to begin from the base drawing or gerber program. Therefore it’s difficult to change. On its surface there is a coverlay. Before the modification, we have to remove it, after the modification, we have to recover it, which is difficult.

3. Dimension limitation

Since FPC is not popular, we usually use intermittent method to make them. Then we can’t make too long or wide FPC with the limit of manufacture instruments dimensions.

4. Easier to be damaged if improper operation

It is easier to cause the damage of FPC circuits because of improper operation. Special trained workers are needed in tin plating and rework

 B: Advantages

FPC is the printed circuit board which is made of flexible insulating base material. It has many advantages many rigid PCBs don’t have.

1. It can be bent, rolled, folded freely, can be arranged randomly according to the space, can be moved and stretched in 3-D space, then integrate the components assembly and wiring connection.

2. It can satisfy the need of electronic products to develop in the direction of high density, smaller size, higher reliability, since FPC can greatly reduce the volume and weight of electronic products. Therefore FPC is widely applied in fields or products of aerospace, military, mobile communication, laptop, computer exterior design, PDA, and digital camera.

3. FPC also has the advantages of good thermal diffusivity and solderability, easy to assembly, low combined cost. The design of rigid-flex boards also make up the disadvantage of components carrying ability of flexible base material.

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