“Supply chain.” Who knew that business term would become part of everyday conversation.
Supply chain issues are everywhere. Key shipping ports and shipping lanes are finally becoming unclogged. Retailers have too much clothing, but not enough household supplies. Consumers can’t find their favorite personal brands. Construction projects are being delayed.
In the electronic components industry, raw materials are hard to come by. Fab closures in some geographies are affecting lead times. Distributor inventories are lower than normal. OEMs like car manufacturers can’t get semiconductors, so thousands of unfinished products sit in storage.
As supply chain issues linger, OEMs are looking for any solution to get products out the door. One option being revisited is modular design or electronic sub-components.
Modular Design Provides an Option
Modular design is not a new product development concept. Essentially, the design approach integrates or combines smaller, independent “modules” in to a final product. It can offer system flexibility and configurability by exchanging “modules” to create many different product options.
When it comes to PCB design, OEMs are using modular design principles to help combat supply chain issues. A core digital design of CPUs and memory may stay the same. However, there are any number of modular design options for I/O, analog, data acquisition, sensors, power, communications and similar electronic functionality.
In many applications, OEMs may put all of their electronic functionality on one PCB. With supply chain issues as a driver, OEM are dividing up PCBs into smaller modules. Oftentimes, the design approach is simpler and less costly. Instead of having an analog portion of a large PCB, now there is an analog daughter card. Any old op-amp can do, so analog daughter cards can be swapped with ease.
New modular daughter cards need board-to-board connectors. That’s where Samtec comes in.
Samtec Board-to-Board Interconnect Solutions
Samtec offers the largest variety of board-to-board connectors in the industry. Many Samtec blog readers are no doubt familiar with high-speed speed mezzanine solutions like NovaRay®, AcceleRate® HP, or AcceleRate® HD. However, most new modular daughter cards don’t run at 56/112 Gbps PAM4 data rates.
For new modular options, Samtec’s standard products are just the answer. Sockets, headers, terminals and board stackers in low profile, elevated, and high-density designs connect multiple PCBs together.
Samtec flexible stacking solutions come in a variety of pitches, density, stack heights, and orientations. Options include vertical and right-angle orientations; through-hole, surface mount, mixed technology, press-fit and pass-through terminations.
Identify application-specific mated connector sets with the following Samtec Solutionator®: