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Electronic manufacturing industry
Ceramic substrate VS PCB board - what's their difference

As a carrier and connection platform for electronic components, electronic substrates play a vital role in the electronics industry. With the continuous development of science and technology, different types of electronic substrates have emerged to meet the needs of various fields. This article will focus on two common electronic substrates, ceramic substrate and PCB board, compare their advantages and disadvantages, and analyze their respective application fields.

Table of Contents

The introduction of ceramic substrate

Ceramic substrate is an electronic substrate made of ceramic materials, usually with alumina (Al2O3) and aluminum nitride (AlN) as the main components. Ceramic substrates have the characteristics of good thermal conductivity, high-frequency performance and high-temperature stability, and are widely used in electronic devices in harsh environments such as high power, high frequency and high temperature.

The introduction of PCB board

PCB (Printed Circuit Board) is an electronic substrate based on an insulating substrate with a conductive pattern distributed on it. According to the number of layers, PCB boards can be divided into single-sided, double-sided and multi-layer PCB. PCB board has the characteristics of good design flexibility, low cost and easy production, and is currently the most commonly used type of substrate in the electronics industry.

The difference of ceramic substrate and PCB board

Material and thermal conductivity

The ceramic substrate is made of ceramic material, which has high thermal conductivity and strong heat conduction and heat dissipation ability. The substrate of the PCB board is an insulating material, with low thermal conductivity and relatively weak heat conduction and heat dissipation capacity. Therefore, ceramic substrates have better thermal stability and heat dissipation performance in high-power and high-temperature environments.

Electrical properties and high frequency characteristics

Ceramic substrates have low dielectric constant and dielectric loss, making them have excellent electrical properties in high-frequency circuits. However, the dielectric constant and dielectric loss of PCB boards are relatively high, resulting in poor electrical performance in high-frequency PCB. Therefore, ceramic substrates have obvious advantages in high-frequency applications.

Mechanical strength and reliability

The ceramic substrate has high mechanical strength and bending resistance, while maintaining good stability in high temperature environments. In contrast, PCB boards have low mechanical strength and are susceptible to factors such as temperature and humidity, resulting in low reliability in high temperature and humid environments. As a result, ceramic substrates perform better in harsh environments.

Cost and design flexibility

PCB boards have obvious advantages in terms of manufacturing process and design flexibility. Because its substrate is an insulating material, the production cost is low, and a variety of complex printed circuit boards can be designed according to the needs. In contrast, ceramic substrates are expensive to manufacture and have relatively low design flexibility. Therefore, PCB boards are more competitive in terms of cost and design.

The application field analysis of ceramic substrate and PCB board

Due to the respective characteristics of ceramic substrates and PCB boards, they have certain differences in the application fields.

Due to its excellent thermal conductivity, high-frequency characteristics and high-temperature stability, ceramic substrates are more suitable for electronic equipment in harsh environments such as high power, high frequency and high temperature, such as communication equipment, automotive electronics, lasers, medical equipment and other fields. At the same time, ceramic substrates are also widely used in high-end LED lighting, solar photovoltaic and other industries.

Because of its low cost and good design flexibility, PCB board is suitable for substrates of various electronic devices, especially consumer electronic products with high requirements for cost and design flexibility, such as mobile phones, tablet computers, household appliances and other fields. In addition, PCB boards also have certain applications in industrial control, aerospace and other fields.

Summary

Ceramic substrates and PCB boards represent two different types of electronic substrates, each with certain advantages and disadvantages. Ceramic substrates excel in thermal conductivity, high-frequency characteristics, and high-temperature stability, making them suitable for electronic devices in demanding environments such as high power and high frequency.

PCB board is widely used in the field of consumer electronics due to its advantages of low cost and good design flexibility. In practical applications, it is necessary to reasonably select ceramic substrates or PCB boards to meet the needs of different scenarios according to factors such as product performance requirements, cost budgets and design requirements.

FAQ

Ceramic substrate is an electronic substrate made of ceramic materials, usually with alumina (Al2O3) and aluminum nitride (AlN) as the main components.

* Al2O3
* BeO
* AlN

◆Strong mechanical stress and stable shape; High strength, high thermal conductivity, high insulation; Strong adhesion, anti-corrosion.
◆ Good thermal cycling performance, the number of cycles is up to 50,000 times, and the reliability is high.
◆ Like the PCB board (or IMS substrate), the structure of various graphics can be etched; No pollution, no pollution.
◆ The use temperature is wide -55 °C ~ 850 °C; The coefficient of thermal expansion is close to that of silicon.

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