What Certifications and Standards Apply to PCB Assembly?
Printed circuit boards (PCBs) have become increasingly popular owing to their use in all types of electronic devices. PCBs massively contribute to the current carrying capacity of these devices, also support the attached components to perform as expected. This means PCBs play a vital role in the functionality of electronic devices. Therefore, they need to meet the assured quality standards. Today, OEMs produce these circuit boards in adherence to the strictest and demanding assembly guidelines. These design standards determine how circuit boards are documented, constructed, tracked, tested, and inspected.
Get Introduced to Different Printed Circuit Board Industry Certifications and Standards
Electronic devices are varied and used in different areas including consumer appliances and gadgets. Most of them are also electromechanical or electrical parts or products with PCBs embedded in them. Therefore, PCB manufacturers need to comply with the following PCB certifications and standards. So, let’s have a look at them.
- ITAR: The acronym stands for the International Traffic in Arms Regulations. ITAR manufactures and controls defense-related articles and services defined in the United States Munition List or USML. The company that controls, designs, manufacturers, sells, distributes products on the USML should be ITAR compliant. These specifications also cover PCB standards required in several military and defense applications.
- ISO: The International Organization of Standardization is a widely accepted standard across the globe. ISO helps promote several global organizations to fulfil and exceed their clients’ expectations by offering quality products as well services. Over the years, several OEMs have achieved the ISO 9001 certification, and hence they need to ensure their products and services meet the required quality standards. This is applicable across industries with variations in certain parameters. The certification adds to the credibility of the product and the organization. There are various certifications designed by ISO, and ISO 9001:2015 is popular among them. Being the latest version of ISO 9001 international standards, ISO 9001:2015 covers areas such as planning, organizations, leadership, support, operation, performance evaluation, and process improvement. ISO 9001 can be applied to any organization, and the PCB manufacturing industry is no exception.
- RoHS: The Restriction of Hazardous Substances originated in the European Union. This certification is designed to restrict the use of hazardous substances in electronic and electrical equipment manufacturing. This may include Mercury (Hg), Lead (Pb), Hexavalent Chromium (Cr VI), Cadmium (Cd), Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDE), and Polybrominated Biphenyls (PBB). RoHS mainly emphasizes low concentrations of each type of restricted substance, and the actual concentration must always be less than that.
- UL Listing: The Underwriter Laboratory or UL is the oldest independent safety science company across the globe. Since its inception in 1894, UL concentrates on creating safe working environments. The company is acknowledged by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). It creates safety standards that help safeguard people, products, and places in many ways. There are different UL standards used for electronic devices, and UL 796 is one of the popular among them. These standards oversee the designing and manufacturing of circuit boards.
- IPC: IPC stands for the Institute of Printed Circuits. It is a trade organization that plans quality standards for PCB assemblies. It is one of the widely recognized standards. OEMs specialized in IPC standards prefer either IPC-A-600 or IPC-6012 standards.
- MIL: The United States Department of Defense regulates this standard especially for electronics manufacturers. With these standards, OEMs ensure their circuit boards meet strict requirements. Most of the electronics manufacturers follow MIL-PRF-50884, MIL-PRF-31032, and MIL-PRF-55110 standards.
Consideration of printed circuit board certifications and standards depends on the type of industry you serve and the application requirement. The aforementioned information helps you understand the importance of quality standards for PCB assembly. If you are looking for PCBs for your upcoming electronics application, you must consult an ITAR certified industry player like Accelerated Assemblies. The company specializes in offering industrial as well as commercial PCBs across the USA. The company possesses quality PCB certifications to meet the stringent requirements of challenging applications.