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Some Commen PCB Terms-M&N&O&P
Jun 25, 2018

M

MeaslingA form of delamination just below the surface of the laminate material that is visible and shows as several small circular areas.
Metal FoilThe copper foil that is used for the conductive layers of the PCB.
Micro-SectioningPart of the quality or inspection process will often require a Micro-Section of the circuit board.  A small rectangular area of the board is punched out of the board in order to inspect the quality of the hole walls and plating.  It allows for a look at the inner layers of the board to verify the overall process.
Mounting HoleThis is an unplated hole (meaning it will be non-conductive) that is used to secure the circuit board to its final assembly.
Multilayer PCBA Multi Layer PCB is a PCB that has more than two layers. 

N

NC Drill The data file that defines the drill hole sizes, X & Y coordinates, and tool numbers for a circuit board. Also known as Excelon drill file, 
Netlist List of names of symbols or parts and their connection points which are logically connected in each net of a circuit.
Nomenclature Also see Legend or Silkscreen.  This is applied to the circuit board to identify components and other key information on the bare circuit board.
Non Plated HoleA Non-Plated hole is a hole that is drilled after the copper plating process so that there is no plating in the hole.  Often used for mounting holes. 
NRE (Non-Recurring Expense) A NRE is any type of onetime costs related to the manufacturing of a printed circuit board.  These costs will vary but could include Tooling or Engineering costs, electrical test etc.

O

Open An open circuit is a break in the continuity of any given circuit on the board.  This would be identified during the electrical test process which would result in a failed test.
Organic Surface Protectant (OSP) OSP is an organic chemical finish that is applied to the copper.   The shelf life is very short with OSP and the boards should be used very soon after applying the finish.

P

Pattern Plating The process to electroplate only select portions of a production PCB panel.
Photo Plotter Used to print the patterns on the photo tools used to manufacture a PCB.
Photoresist Light sensitive material that is applied to the production PCB panel and then used to expose the pattern from the photoplot and developed. The remaining copper that is not covered by resist is etched away leaving only the copper pattern needed for the board.
Phototool Printed by the photo plotter to be used for making the copper pattern. Also used for making the patterns for soldermask and silkscreen.
Plasma EtchingPlasma Etching is a process used to remove copper from a PCB panel for special RF materials that cannot be processed with standard etching procedures. 
Plated HoleA Plated Hole is a drilled hole on a PCB panel that has completed a plating process to allow a copper connection with pads connected to the hole. 
PrepregThe condition of the fiberglass material used on multi-layer PCBs that is placed between the core layers of the board.  It is still pliable and soft until it is heated and pressed in a lamination press.  The heat causes the material to “flow” and then it will harden as it cools.


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