It is no secret that the electronics industry is proliferating. As electronics advance, so does the complexities of printed circuit boards. Today, many resources are available in PCB design for selecting a suitable substrate.
When working on a project using PCB, you will most likely come across the term Rogers PCB and it is common to wonder what it means. Rogers PCB — often called Rogers — is an impregnated fiberglass sheet material used as a substrate for printed circuit boards. Rogers, like Panasonic materials such as Megtron 6, has been used to make hundreds of thousands of electronics and products.
While it is the industry standard, many people are unfamiliar with the Rogers material selection guide. We have put together some vital information on the topic, and it might even answer any confusion you had related to the subject. Moreover, this guide aims to help you pick the most electrical-friendly and economical materials for your next printed circuit board.
Rogers PCB Explained
Rogers PCB is a high-frequency PCB material. This material has been used for decades in electronic circuit boards. It is relatively easy to work with, provides good mechanical strength and rigidity, and has good insulating properties. It has many advantages over other circuit boards and has become a standard many companies use. The Rogers PCB can be very thin or thick, depending on the user’s needs. This makes it possible to produce different types of projects that require different thicknesses of PCBs.
These PCBs are available in many specifications, including high-temperature and low-temperature options. Rogers PCBs are compatible with a wide range of electronics applications, including:
- Medical devices
- Test and measurement equipment
- Commercial and industrial appliances and controls
- Consumer electronics
- Communications networks
Rogers PCB Material Selection Guide
Rogers offers a wide range of products, from rigid to flexible, with multiple material types, thicknesses, and finishes. Moreover, the Rogers PCB material is available in different grades similar to Panasonic materials graded as Megtron 4, Megtron 6, and so forth. Each application requires other characteristics from board material, so there is no single best choice for all situations. However, some general guidelines can help you decide which Rogers materials best suit your needs. It affects many aspects of your design, including:
The cost of manufacturing your PCB will vary depending on the material used. For example, FR4 is much less expensive than TG130 or high-density FR4 (HDF).
Thermal conductivity measures how well heat travels through a material. Materials with higher thermal conductivity (such as FR4) are better able to dissipate heat from components and generate less heat themselves.
Dielectric strength measures how well a substrate can withstand an electric field without breaking down under stress or strain. A dielectric constant measures the ability of a material to store an electrical charge. High dielectric constants indicate high insulation resistance, while low dielectrics indicate high insulation capacitance. This makes it easier to design circuits with minimal noise levels.
Some applications require electromagnetic shielding to protect sensitive components such as microprocessors or integrated circuits against electromagnetic interference (EMI). Rogers offers two types of shields in these cases: hard-coat anodized aluminum or copper foil laminate.
Electrical properties include dielectric strength, dissipation factor, and impedance. Dielectric strength is vital because it determines how well the board can withstand electrical interference from outside sources. The dissipation factor is related to dielectric strength but also reflects the ability of a material to dissipate heat generated by high-current devices like power supplies and motors. Impedance refers to how easily an electrical conductor can pass an electric current through itself without being affected; this property depends on both dielectric strength and dissipation factor.
Ease of Fabrication
Certain Rogers materials have more excellent resistance to bending during fabrication stages, making them easier to work with for large-scale production runs.
Common Rogers Materials and Their Applications
The Rogers PCB family includes many materials, including Rogers 4350, 4533, and 3003. Each material has the characteristics that make it ideal for specific applications.
Rogers 4350 is an excellent choice for high-frequency applications that require a low impedance board. This material is especially suited for military, industrial and aerospace applications where durability and reliability are essential. Rogers 4350 is also well-suited for automotive applications where the boards are exposed to harsh conditions such as water, oil, and chemicals.
Rogers 4003 offers high strength and is used in various structural applications, including automotive chassis parts, truck beds, and large truck bodies. This material is ideal for service under severe exposure to heat, humidity, or stress caused by vibration or shock.
Rogers 4730 is a high-strength alloy with superior strength, toughness, good ductility, and weldability. This alloy has been used in various applications, including jet engine components, aerospace hardware, automotive parts, large truck bodies, and welding electrodes.
Rogers 4533 is a high-strength material used in applications where strength is needed, but weight must be kept to a minimum. The material has excellent corrosion resistance, thermal stability, and electrical properties. It is used to manufacture parts such as gears, valves, bearings, and seals because of its ability to withstand high temperatures. This material can also be used in applications where strength and superior toughness are needed.
Rogers 4835 is a high strength, high modulus material used in various applications, including aircraft engines, jet engine components, and aerospace structures. This material is also ideal for use in applications where low weight is critical such as bicycles and motorcycles.
Rogers 3003 is a general-purpose material with excellent mechanical properties, including strength and stiffness. This material is used in applications where a high current carrying capacity and low impedance are required. Rogers 3003 is also suitable for use in high-temperature environments such as motors and power supplies.
Rogers 3260 has excellent welding characteristics, making it ideal for spot welding applications when used with filler metal containing copper, silicon, or manganese (copper free). This material also has improved hardenability, increasing toughness after hardening and tempering.
Rogers 3035 is a general-purpose alloy with excellent strength and moderate ductility at room temperature. This alloy is used in automotive engine blocks, cylinder heads, and transmission cases, where its good machinability is beneficial. It also serves as a replacement for 3024 in some applications.
Rogers 3203 is an aluminum alloy with high strength and excellent wear resistance. This material offers good stiffness, low thermal expansion, and excellent creep resistance at elevated temperatures. It is used in various structural applications, including aircraft landing gear and wheels, truck wheels, industrial machinery components, automotive wheels and bodies, tools, and equipment. This alloy has better corrosion resistance than aluminum alloys containing magnesium.
Rogers 3210 is a high-strength, heat-treated material that offers excellent resistance to impact and wear. It is suitable for various applications, including automotive engine parts, transmission components, and suspension systems. This material can also be used for general-purpose parts requiring high strength, toughness, and wear resistance.
Rogers TMM10i is a family of high-strength, high-ductility materials that can be used in applications where the material must withstand high-stress levels and undergo many thermal cycles. This material can be used in various applications, including aircraft landing gear and structural components for airframes, space vehicles, and missiles.
Rogers RT/Duroid 5880
Rogers RT/Duroid 5880 is a general-purpose material with excellent strength and toughness. It is ideal for applications involving high wear or abrasion because of its high resistance to impact, and its ability to resist high temperatures. This material can be used in various applications, including automotive exhaust systems, chain drives, and engine parts.
The Bottom Line
Understanding the Rogers PCB and Rogers material selection is fundamental and creates a basis for discussing PCB failure problems. If you want to know more about Rogers PCB and other RF PCB materials, check out the PCB material section at Hemeixin. It is full of information on choosing the suitable material for your next design project.
By considering the individualistic characteristics and properties of each material and reading through the guide to compare them, such as comparing Megtron 6 with any of the Rogers material, you can create a printed circuit board that is properly routed and ready for production. Here is hoping that we have shed a little more light on the confusing process of selecting your board materials through our guide.