Metal Core PCB

Metal core PCB

A PCB with a metal basis for the heat spreader area is referred to as a Metal Core Printed Circuit Board (MCPCB), alternatively known as a thermal PCB or metal-supported PCB. The thick metal (almost always aluminium or copper) is covering 1 side of the PCB. Metal core can refer to metal, which may be on the board’s back or somewhere in the centre. 

The core of an MCPCB serves to divert heat away from vital board components and into less important regions, such as the metallic core or the metal heat-sink backing. Instead of FR4 or CEM3 boards, base metals are employed in the MCPCB.

Advantages of metal core PCB

8–9 times higher than FR4 PCBs, metal core boards transmit heat. These metalcore laminates dissipate heat more quickly, keeping the heat-generating components cooler. In order to create the shortest route from the source of heat to the metal backing plate, a dielectric material is maintained as thin as possible.

Metal Core PCB Materials and Thickness

The thermal PCB’s metal core can be copper, aluminium (an aluminium core PCB), a combination of specific alloys, or heavy copper. 

A PCB with an aluminium core is the most typical. Other materials, such as brass or steel, are occasionally thought about but are not advised. Due to the extreme hardness of these metals, breaking the PCB into smaller pieces might be challenging. The production chemicals and how the metal will interact to them are additional factors to take into account when choosing metal PCB materials.

Makers of metal-core PCBs manufacture their boards in various ways. Solder mask, a top brass circuit layer, a high thermal conductivity dielectric layer, and even the metal core base layer—typically an aluminium substrate—are all visible when a simple one-layer MCPCB is examined.


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