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Jun 28th 2018

Design for Manufacture (DfM): electronic component selection

As most of us know, the supply of electronic components is relatively unreliable (parts becoming obsolete, suddenly going out of stock with a long lead time, etc.). Fortunately, there are a couple of simple rules that can mitigate this commercial risk, and both have their root in the design function.

Use PCB Train for less demanding components

Pull up resistors, decoupling capacitors and any other component in a design that really doesn't require the highest specification, should all be picked from our PCB Train stock.

The reason this is much better than picking specific items from, say Farnell, is that the components are broad tolerance items of preferred value, which are easy to replace with other components if the supply of any of them becomes problematic. NE will deal with this: it is seamless to our clients.

The opposite scenario, in which our client painstakingly selects individual components with specific supplier and manufacture details, is that the supply falters and production falters with it because approval to change the part has to be sought.

Hiccup free production and low and stable blood pressure are best found through using PCB Train

Use Silicon Expert to select the more complex items

When more complex, costly and expensive electronic chips have a faltering supply it can be much more troublesome than with decoupling capacitors or simple pull  ups. The said item would almost certainly be critical, and replacing it would more than likely mean re-design. Therefore, when selecting such components at the design stage, use Silicon Expert, which is an expert site that will give guidance on the supply-life and availability of components.

These two simple expedients will greatly improve the longevity of a given design.

If specific advice is required contact Jon Hawkins at Newbury Innovation (