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Predicting the Lifetime of the PCB - From Experiment to Simulation

The initial task at hand was to evaluate a concept to predict the lifetime of PCBs by creating a simulation model.We found a correlation between the Board Level Drop Test and the Board Level Cycling Bend Test. Therefore, the BLDT can be replaced and the BLCBT can be used as Quick Test to check new materials. The in-plane material data of the individual glass reinforced layers was experimentally determined, while the out-ofplane data (orthotropic behavior had to be taken into account) was determined using a micromechanics approach (digimat
–MF, e-Xstream engineering SA, Louvain-la-Neuve, BE).
For the determination of the local loading situation parameter on the outermost PCB layer a simulation model based on a submodeling technique was applied. Additionally, it was necessary to use a fracture mechanics based model in order to determine a mesh size independent value to evaluate this loading situation. The combination of BLCBT at different amplitudes and the local loading simulations will allow the generation of characteristic failure curves. Based on these characteristic failure curves, a possible lifetime prediction methodology was suggested. Further scope of investigation on this topic may include involving further failure modes caused by Drop Test. After a successful verification and implementation of this methodology,
the cost and time consuming Drop Test experiments might be significantly reduced.
Furthermore, this methodology could be used for other widely used reliability tests as well, e.g. Temperature Cycle Tests.
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