All About CEM-3 PCB Materials

CEM-3” composite epoxy resin material type 3, is made from epoxy resin, glass cloth, and glass fiber padding. It is a medium-performance material used in the manufacturing of printed circuit boards and is typically considered a cost-effective option suitable for various circuit structures. While CEM-3 comes at a slightly higher cost compared to CEM-1, it offers superior performance and is widely adopted. Additionally, it shares some performance similarities with FR-4, to the extent that they are UL recognized as interchangeable materials.

Electrical InsulationGoodGoodExcellent
Thermal ConductivityGoodGoodExcellent
cem 3 pcb

CEM-3 PCB Material Characteristics

CEM-3 is considered a standard substrate material, offering sufficient reliability for electronic circuits. Firstly, it boasts a high glass transition temperature and dimensional stability, which helps avoid electrical performance issues due to heat in high-temperature projects. Additionally, CEM-3 is highly processable and compatible with standard PCB processes, simplifying the manufacturing process, increasing efficiency, and reducing production costs. For products with additional concerns about toxic substances, CEM-3 PCB uses non-halogenated flame retardants. This not only prevents harm to human health in the event of combustion but also aligns with the call for sustainable and responsible electronic ecosystems.

While CEM-3 PCB generally performs well in typical applications, striking a balance between performance and cost-effectiveness, it’s important to consider their limitations when selecting the right PCB material for electronic projects. One notable drawback is that circuit boards constructed using CEM-3 may exhibit higher signal loss and impedance changes in high-frequency environments. Furthermore, this material has moderate dielectric strength and limited compatibility with advanced designs, which may restrict the flexibility and miniaturization required for complex electronic devices and systems.

High Quality CEM-3 PCB Manufacturing

The quality of PCB is not only influenced by the manufacturer but should also be a focus during the design phase. Typically, for CEM-3 PCB, the board thickness and copper thickness are set between 0.8 millimeters to 2.0 millimeters and 35μm to 70μm, respectively. The thickness and copper thickness directly impact the mechanical performance and current-carrying capacity of the PCB. However, it’s essential to strike a balance as increasing thickness also leads to higher costs. Therefore, during the design phase, it’s crucial to adjust these parameters based on the specific requirements of the application.

Another critical factor is the line width and spacing. It’s generally recommended to set the line width at 0.2 millimeters or above and ensure adequate line spacing to provide stronger electrical insulation performance. This helps reduce signal interference and enhance the circuit’s reliability.

In the PCB production process, various stages are typically involved, including etching, drilling, plating, assembly, and testing. Modern PCB manufacturing often employs automated equipment, highlighting the importance of design files. Therefore, accurate and clear design files are crucial to ensure the smooth progress of the production process.

To ensure that the CEM-3 PCB produced by FS Technology meets customer requirements, we inspect the design files upon receipt to ensure accuracy. During the production process, we employ AOI inspection equipment to review critical steps, avoiding production faults that could lead to additional costs and delivery issues.

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