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Flex, Rigid-Flex, And Rigid Printed Circuit Boards – How Are They Different?

PCB boards are a common component of any electronic device. They work as a base for the other components and allow them to interface with one another. A PCB board can be made from several different materials, depending on what you need it for. Here is a list of the most common types of PCB boards.

Flex PCB boards

Flex PCB boards are made out of a composite material that is flexible, but still durable and strong. They are used primarily in flexible circuits and projects that require less physical strength from the circuit board.

The composite material makes these boards even more durable than traditional PCB boards because it can absorb impacts and stop them from causing damage to the circuit board. Flex boards can be used as connectors, and as full circuits assembled with components. And it can hold the soldering heat moreover it can stand way more than rigid ones with high temperature based on the used film material type.

It also allows for easier repairs by using a solder pot instead of special tools. Flex PCB boards are mostly used for prototyping because they can be easily cut into any shape or size needed.

Rigid-Flex PCB boards

As the name suggests, a flexible printed circuit is a pattern of conductors printed onto a flexible insulating film. Rigid-flex is the name given to a printed circuit that is a combination of both flexible circuit(s) and rigid circuit(s). While the rigid component assists with connecting and mounting electronic components in similar densities to rigid PCBs, the flexible element enables bending or folding to make the board small enough to fit in tight spaces. Rigid-flex PCBs’ flexible nature also eliminates the need for any flex cables and their associated connectors, to provide electrical interconnection between hard boards.

Rigid-flex PCB boards are used for projects requiring high performance. They can be made from rigid materials, like FR-4 glass epoxy-coated copper board, or flexible materials, such as silicone rubber or printed circuit board.

The most common use for rigid-flex PCBs is in high-temperature devices or those that have to deal with high levels of humidity. This type of PCB board can also be used in military and space applications.

Rigid PCB boards

A rigid PCB board is a type of PCB board made from a ceramic or glass material. They are very durable and can withstand high heat and prolonged exposure to the elements.

Rigid boards are not as flexible as other types of PCB boards, which can be an issue when you need to use them in tight spaces, like inside a device. But despite this limitation, rigid boards are great for high-use areas, such as where the board will be housed in a device or computer case.

These types of PCB boards are typically found in devices where rigidity is needed, such as printers.

Conclusion

PCB boards are a common component of any electronic device. They work as a base for the other components and allow them to interface with one another. A PCB board can be made from several different materials, depending on what you need it for. Here is a list of the most common types of PCB boards: