PCB Design: Guidelines for Every Designer

If you happen to be just starting with a new design, you may end up leaving some PCB design guidelines to be just an afterthought as you would be spending the majority of your time on the component selections and circuit design. However, it is important to know that failing to provide enough time and just focusing your attention on one thing could lead to a design that interprets poorly from its digital domain to the physical reality. This can be very bothersome for the manufacturer to make.

Below are some important guidelines you need to know to come with a design that is functional, manufacturable, and reliable.


Fine Tune the Component Placement

The component placement stage of the PCB layout process is both a science and an art that needs strategic considerations regarding the major real estate that is available on your board. While such process could be very challenging, how you will replace your electric components would identify how easy the board will be manufactured and how it will meet the original requirements for the design.

The guideline that you need to remember is that when you are utilizing mixed-technology components, the manufacturer may need an extra procedure to assemble the board, which would mean additional cost. So, you need to be prepared for this.


Keep Things Separate

Current spikes and large voltage in power circuits can all interfere with the current control circuits and low voltage. In order to lessen this, some guidelines need to be followed.

Separation. The control ground and power ground need to be covered separately for every power supply stage.

Placement. If you placed the ground plane in the mid layer, make sure that there is a small impedance path so you can reduce the risk of power circuit interference and this will help keep the control signals.


In order to lessen capacitive coupling because of the location of a large ground plane, as well as the lines that are routed overhead and below it, you need to have your analog ground crossed by analog lines only.


Combat Heating Issues

Have you experienced that your circuit performance has degraded? Or your board got damaged because of heat issues? The problem bothers many designers when heat dissipation is not considered. This issue should be identified and solves as this can affect the entire process and design.

These are just a few guidelines that needs to be followed in your PCB design in order to make sure that you get one that is reliable, manufacturable, and of course functional. Doing so will also eliminate problems along the process and will ensure that you will be getting your desired results. With this, you will be avoiding unnecessary expenses, thus you get to protect your money and as well.


Air Compressor Repairs: Signs that You Need One

If there is a regular need for an air compressor in your business, then you know how unfortunate and costly it is to experience downtime. There will also be a question of whether or not you should have air compressor repairs or replace a broken one. Choosing which way to go can be a big challenge so here is a guide that can help you in your decisions.


The Factors You Need to Consider



This is definitely one of the major factors that should always be considered. While opting to have a new one may seem more expensive, you should note the cost of ownership for a span of ten-year life and you will realize that the overall purchase price of the new one would be around 10% of the entire cost.


Age of the Unit

Another factor that will greatly influence whether you should do air compressors repairs or replace your old or broken one would be the age of the unit, as well as energy efficiency when compared with newer models and its reliability and history.

Before you make the final decision, be sure that you check the system in case a breakdown is due to something that can still be fixed.


Look for the Signs

If the air compressor is showing signs of high suction, this could indicate that it should be repaired. If it starts producing at a lessened capacity, this could be a sign that it’s evaporator is too big for the compressor. If you think that this is the problem, you should call someone to have it repaired or serviced. With this, you will know the best course of action to take.

If it happens that the flow is reduced, this could lead to low-head pressure- something not good. This could the air compressor to function at a very low capacity than what is specified in its ratings. This means that the condenser is very big and can potentially lead to a decreased pressure in the head. If you are experiencing this problem, you should replace the old parts or do an upgrade.

If the compressor pumps at a low capacity due to some issues, then the refrigerant will soon get back up into the condenser. This could lead to high condenser subcooling, which you need to immediately take care of. One more thing that may happen when the compressor is not pumping to its ability is that the valves have gone bad. This could lead to amp draw which could be a very frustrating problem. Having an amp draw means that the compressor functions lower that what the rating specifies.

As soon as you see any problem that have been listed above, you might need to consider having your compressor be repaired.


Product Design Firms: What Questions to Ask Them?

Product design firms are very important as they can turn a simple product idea into reality. This is why it is very important to choose the rights one to work with you every step of the way. But with so many companies that are offering varied services, how should you choose the right one? Here are some questions that you can ask them to ensure that you that you have the right company.

Questions to Ask

Does the Company Offer a One-Stop-Shop Services?

As there are so many product design firms today, it is important to consider the services that they offer. How the product is engineered and designed in its early stages can greatly affect the cost, quality, and performance of the entire cycle. Given this, the firm should be able to cover all aspects of the product development and need to ensure that the process is cohesive and seamless. Work with one that can help you in every step of the process, from conceptualization stage to production.


Does the Company have a Portfolio of their Work?

Testimonials from clients is a great way to determine the caliber of the company that you plan to work with. However, nothing will beat the ability to review and check the company’s actual portfolio of their work. When looking for a company for your product design needs, take a look at their portfolio so you will see for yourself the kinds of works they have done in the past, as well as the companies that they have worked for.


How Diverse is their Expertise?

Just like with any other projects, time will come that a diverse set of expertise and skills will be needed. The set of skills that will be needed in product design will be different from those required during manufacturing or prototyping. As such, the engineering firm should have people that have expertise in different areas of product design.


Do they Provide a Point of Contact during the Duration of the Project?

Communication is a vital part of the entire process of product design and while experts from the firm work on the project, you need to have a single point of contact during the duration of the project. This will help streamline communication, create better efficiency, and will insure that the point of contact understands the aspects of the engagement.


Does the Company Stand behind their Work?

By nature, product design projects are dynamic by nature and anytime, the scope might change, functionalities could shift, and the intent of product performance may contract or expand. In this case, communication is very critical so both the client and the design firm are always on the same page. But one of the best ways to guarantee the best quality of the final project is a service guarantee. Make sure that you work with a company that is capable of providing satisfaction guarantee as this would show their commitment to the project that they are working on.

Being wise in choosing the company to work with for your product design can greatly contribute to the success of the project. Thus, make sure that you find the right one.


Outdoor Lighting Melbourne: The Importance of Installing One

Of all seasons, spring can be one of the most inviting. It encourages people to spend more time outside. While it is not yet so warm to jump in the pool, there are several ways to enjoy a pleasant evening with your family and friends in your front or backyard.

Without proper outdoor lighting in Melbourne, when the night comes, the fun will have to stop. Due to limited sight, you will be faced with the risk of hurting yourself. Whether you want to have some barbeque, roast marshmallows, watch the kids as they play, or look at the stars, you need to make sure that you have proper lighting to maximize the experience. Below are some reasons why you need to install one.


Makes People Feel Safer

Before you decide to install your outdoor lighting Melbourne, you have to consider how you can make the most out of your outdoor space. For instance, if you have a deck, patio, or pool area, you can opt for zoned lighting as it can highlight a designated area. For sure you would also want to illuminate other areas like entryway, sidewalk, garage, and driveway.

These areas are all important to light to guarantee safe navigation and to prevent a trip to the hospital. When proper lighting is not secured, one can trip over a hidden step or fall of the deck or even worse.

As they say, the more lighting the better. By installing your lights in their right locations, you can help eliminate scary spaces, thus increasing peace of mind and safety. This is without mentioning that guests will be able to find your place with ease.


Increased Functionality

Adding some flood lights to the deck, front lawn, or your back patio will allow you to take full advantage of these spaces. There is no need for you to go inside when the dusk time comes and you will be able to relax with your family and friends outside. You can even enjoy a very nice dinner around the patio table.


Better Home Security

A landscape and yard that is well-lit can deter unwanted visitors from coming onto your property. However, many homeowners commit the mistake of adding security lights only in the front of the home while the back is being ignored. The back can be one of the most vulnerable places because of the fencing. Thus, be sure that install lighting in the back area as well. Always determine the darkest parts of the home as these are where intruders are most likely to enter.


Enhance the Home’s Appeal

The home is one of the most prized possessions of people. When you have spent to much of your time perfecting your interior and the other part of the house, why would you allow them to go unseen at night? You can always highlight your home’s best features by installing garden lighting, uplights, and even some low-voltage exterior lighting around the shrubs and trees. These lights will not only add appeal to the home, but a sense of warmth as well.


Waterjet Machine: Features that Make it Right for Your Project

Through the years, the use of a waterjet machine for cutting projects has become so popular. As compared to other cutting methods, the use of waterjet cutting is likely to produced a cleaner and more precise results. It is also a more economical option that has no drawbacks associated with other methods, such as rough edges and thermal distortion.

Waterjet Cutting: How does it Work?

A water jet cutter machine makes use of a high-pressure stream of water. This is then converted to velocity through a jewel orifice and this will create a stream that is as fine as the human hair. Such high-velocity process is capable of cutting through almost any type of material. For softer materials, pure wateriest are used. On the other hand, abrasive wateriest are perfect for cutting harder types of materials. When utilizing an abrasive cutting technique, garnet which is an abrasive material will be produced into the stream in order to increase the pressure, thus resulting in a faster cutting velocity. The abrasive and force of the water creates something that is similar to a liquid sandpaper mixture that soon erodes the material at a fast pace.

From there, the jet stream is moved across the material, following the measurement input to the control system. The ideal speed of the movement is dependent on various factors, such as the shape of the part, material, type of abrasive, and water pressure.


Waterjet Cutting: The Primary Benefits

Cuts different materials

One of the most popular materials that is cut by a waterjet would be metals. There are not so many materials that water jets could not cut. Tempered glass and diamonds are the main materials that cannot be cut. Diamonds are very hard to cut while tempered glass shatters as soon as it cut with a water jet.


No Need for Secondary Finishing

Usually, it would take one session with a water jet to produce the very same cut that you are looking for. Unlike with other cutting techniques, there is no need for secondary finishing. As soon as cutting is done, it is ready. The exactitude and delicacy of the waterjet creates a satin-smooth edge with very minimal kerf. Usually, wateriest have a stream of about 0.02” wide. This results in a narrow kerf that removes a small amount of material. This could be very beneficial of the operator works with a hazardous or expensive material.


Cold-Cutting Process

Waterjet cutting is considered to be a cutting process, unlike with other techniques. Cold cutting means that no heat is generated on the part that is being cut. This very little heat is absorbed by the water. Such benefit is highly valuable, especially if you are trying to produce an end-result that cannot have distortions from a heat-affected zone.

All these benefits simply prove that the use of a waterjet is definitely a good investment. With all these features, you can make the most out of the money that you will be spending for it. So, if think you need one, you can start your search now.


Plasma Cutting Table: Staying Safe while Using the Machine

A plasma cutting machine is a kind of machine that is computerized or numerically controlled. It is combined with a plasma cutting torch and plasma cutting table to cut aluminum, metal, as well as other materials. The cut can be made precisely and quickly and in any desired shape. With the use of coordinates that is supplied by the computer, the torch will be positioning itself over the table and begin cutting shapes defined by parameters that are supplied by the computer.

The process of plasma cutting is utilized to cut steel that come in various thickness with the use of a plasma torch. In the said process, an inert gas is being exhausted at a very high speed out of a nozzle, while its electrical arc is formed through that gas coming from the nozzle and turns that gas into plasma. This plasma is hot enough that it’s capable of melting the metal that is being cut and moves it quick to blow the molten metal.

It has been proven that the machine can deliver the best results and for a company that makes use of it, so many benefits are waiting for them. In order to fully maximize these benefits, the machine should be used properly and safely. Below are a few steps that will ensure safety in the workplace while using the machine.


Tips to Get you Started

Be Protected from Sparks

First off, the employees need to protect themselves, especially their eyes using safety goggles that come with a side shield. In most cases, they will be wearing a face shield or helmet to remove all the doubts of having sparks hit their eyes. This will also help protect their eyes from any damage due to the bright light of a plasma cutting.

In addition, the gloves and clothing need to be flame-resistant. Wool, leather, or heavy denim can work well to provide protection to the body from sparks. If the employees smoke, they should not carry butane lighters or matches.


When the Machine is not in Use

The plasma gets so hot that you may have at least 25 feet between the cutter arc. The gases that are released from the plasma cutting table can be harmful. Thus, you need proper ventilation and be sure to wear a respirator while doing the work.

If the employees are dealing with a coated metal such as galvanized steel, make use of a grinder so you can remove the coating before you make the cut. Heating up this coating will release noxious toxic fumes. If you need to cut the coated material, the employee needs to wear a respirator.


Keep Grounded

It is very important that employees wear rubber gloves, aside from their welding gloves. This is done so they can avoid electric shocks. Also, they should never cut if the environment is damp. The plasma cutter machine need to be wired and grounded by an electrician. As the employee goes with the cutting, he needs to stand on top of a rubber mat.

By simply following all these plasma cutting basics, your and all the employees in your workplace would be able to feel safe and productive at the same time.