What is rogers PCB?
As for Rogers material for PCB itself, it is basically the glass fiber or ceramic base reinforced with hydrocarbon/ceramic. You will find contradictory information while searching for details about Rogers laminate composition. It is because of the many types of this material available. They are also more or less similar to conventional FR-4, which only deteriorates the understanding.
Look for the widespread types of Rogers laminates and their brief descriptions in one of the following sections.
Why use rogers PCB material?
In case you need to know the benefits of using this material first, follow this section. Rogers PCB laminate has multiple advantages over other prepregs, the essential of which are the following:
- Minimal electric loss
This terminology refers to the difference between the initial amount of energy that enters the components and the amount transferred further. In other words, materials that minimize electric loss make electrics more energy-efficient overall.
- Minimal dielectric loss
That’s something that seems to be quite the opposite of the first advantage. Basically, dielectric loss is the natural dissipation of electromagnetic energy – heat. In other words, minimal dielectric losses mean that almost no electric charge goes in nowhere, heating up the material in the process.
No excessive heat equals the higher reliability of an electronic component.
- It is a low outgassing material
Every solid material contains a small amount of gas in it, which can be released under certain circumstances, such as low pressure/high vacuum. It is a vital consideration in aircraft and medical industries, as released gas may condense on optics or pollute a sterile environment.
The indicator that evidence that material is low outgassing indeed is high ionic purity. Roger laminate is one of such, as PCBs produced with it can be used for crafting devices for the mentioned industries.
- Good impedance control
In other words, it is a possibility to control the force applied to a specific position dynamically. Or, to be exact, the possibility to manage the relationship between force, position, velocity, and acceleration in order to control resistance to external motions coming from the environment.
It sounds complicated, isn’t it? But it simply gives robots with Rogers-grounded PCB the possibility to react to external factors. For you, it means that Rogers is one of the few laminates that goes well with PCBs intended for the robotic industry.
These are basically just a few advantages of Rogers material over other regular laminates. There are even more pros that Rogers and other prepregs have in common.
Types of rogers PCB
Let’s review the relevant types of Rogers laminates and their specificities:
- Rogers 4350B. It is a widespread glass fiber (non-PTEE) reinforced ceramic laminate. It is probably the most cost-effective among Rogers materials, as it is grounded on the conventional epoxy/glass (FR4) base. 4350B offers great dimensional stability due to the sufficient coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE). It also suits high-frequency applications.
- Rogers 5880. It is a balanced glass microfiber reinforced laminate with the inclusion of PTFE compounds. It offers good manufacturing capacity, durability, good electrical properties, and high performance at an affordable cost. It is less vulnerable to dielectric loss and electric signal loss compared to the 4350B type. Rogers 5880 is considered a technologically advanced laminate.
- Rogers RO4003/Rogers 3003C. These are ceramic-based PTFE composites intended to offer great electrical and mechanical stability properties. They also have exceptional dielectric constant (Dk) stability and fit lead-free processes well.
- Rogers 5870. It is a PTFE composite with glass microfiber. It has a low Dk and, as a result, offers to minimize energy losses and temperature dissection. It suits high-frequency applications and lead-free processes. But, holes and edges plating cannot be performed over it.
- Rogers 6002. This laminate is reinforced with woven glass that helps it to be electrically stable and mechanically durable. It is the first laminate with adjustable Dk that is not PTFE-based. The material is also known for low exhaust rate, thickness tolerance, and low outgassing.
- Rogers 4533. It is a ceramic-filled laminate, which is additionally strengthened with glass hydrocarbon. 4533 offers good mechanical and electrical properties, suits high-frequency applications and lead-free processes, and almost does not absorb moisture (0.02%).
- Rogers 3730. It is a clad and woven fiberglass reinforced with copper foil. 3730 laminate is known for its low Dk, high dimensional stability, and excellent thermal conductivity. It suits perfectly high-speed, high-frequency applications. It is also environment-friendly, can be used in lead-free processes, and meets flammability standards.
- Rogers 3210. It is another laminate from the strengthened woven fiberglass. You may regard it as an advanced version of Rogers 3000 (in case you are offered this type) because 3210 has enhanced mechanical stability. Besides, it offers great substrate rigidity, dimensional stability, a low coefficient of thermal expansion but high Dk.
- Rogers TMM. This laminate is considered an innovative thermoset prepreg. It is made from hydrocarbon ceramics and polymers with thermoset properties. The combination of mechanical and electrical properties makes TMM laminate perfect for microwaves and communications systems. The feature of Rogers RMM – it does not soften when being passed through areas with high temperatures.
Applications of rogers PCBs
Probably, you already have an initial insight into the potential applications of Rogers PCBs. But let’s summarize them, so they are obvious.
- High-frequency electronics such as microwaves.
- Radio-frequency engineering: power Amplifiers, IP network infrastructure, etc.
- Telecommunications: broadcast satellites, antennas, 5G stations, etc.
- Hi-tech optics for aircraft and spacecraft industries.
- Automated Test Equipment (ATE) and automotive sensors in the automotive industry.
- Conventional computers and computerized systems.
- Advanced medical devices and robotic surgical systems.
Basically, you may find Rogers PCBs anywhere in the telecommunication and hi-tech spheres.
What's the price for Rogers PCB?
Rogers materials have superior performance compared to other laminates, such as FR-4. Unfortunately, it is reflected in its price, which is typically higher than costs for similar options.
If you are searching for a rough price range, you may be charged somewhere between $10 and $50 per PCB on the contemporary market.
And now, let’s take a look at factors that impacts the final cost of Rogers PCBs:
- A number of layers. Costs for custom PCB may significantly fluctuate as they may comprise from 1 to an unlimited number of layers. The prices will change in accordance with the complexity of the composition.
- Design and specific requirements. Occasionally you may need a design that is out of the common templates list. Or, you may need to avoid the use of a particular material, for example, to make your PCB production lead-free. In both cases, you should expect prices to rise accordingly.
- Basic laminate pricing. The most obvious factor is the cost of prepreg itself. As a rule of thumb, the Rogers 3000 series are more expensive than Rogers 4000 series. It is explained by the use of more expensive materials and more complex fabrication processes involved.
- Location of a service provider. It is also the basic aspect of any component fabrication. Labor in different regions has varying pay rates. Also, the availability of some materials may also significantly fluctuate. All these nuances result in the difference between quotes manufacturers from different locations may offer you.
In case you are unsure whether to use Rogers PCBs or not, just consult the applications list above. It is likely that Rogers is your best choice to fabricate electronics for any of those.