Prototype PCB manufacturing, sometimes known as circuit board prototyping, is a manufacturing process wherein new, sometimes even custom designs for circuit boards are utilized in an attempt to increase efficiency for the given pieces of equipment. Printed circuit board prototypes can be a little more costly than your typical, retroactive mass-manufactured ones can be, but the difference in quality and performance is well worth it.
A prototype circuit board is typically designed using some kind of unconventional construction method which sees units built with more care and attention to specific performance metrics.
Prototype PCB manufacturing is not new by any means. There were highly customized boards made as early as fifty years ago or longer. The technology is essentially as old as computers are, with early engineers developing a taste for custom circuitry out of not only technical necessity, but out of personal interest as well. Some truly unique and highly functional boards can, and have been made.
PCB’s are essentially used in all electronics, except for the very simplest technologies not requiring any use of them. They were initially invented around 1936 by an Austrian engineer by the name of Paul Eisler. Invented as part of a radio set Eisler was working on, the United States government became interested in the technology sometime around 1943. They found that this technology could be used to make things like fuses and other weapon systems more efficient. Being a time (World War II) where advancements in military technology were very welcome, this boosted the popularity and visibility of the PCB world a million times over.
Since then, PCB’s have become popular in nearly all computer-related technologies utilized by the military, the public, and the private sector. While we may not think about them very much, they are one of the unsung heroes of the modern age.
You wouldn’t be reading this article if it weren’t for PCB’s, come to think of it.
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