Last Updated on October 22, 2023 by Kevin Chen
Image of PCB testing, source Freepik
After designing, manufacturing and assembling PCB power modules, the next step is the testing and validation process. The most important part of the test entails validating the performance of the PCB power modules.
While the PCB power module may be functioning well, it is important to verify whether the performance match the required standards. This is why we have functional tests and performance tests.
In this guide, we will focus on the performance test and validation. How is it done and what are the key parameters that make up this type of test? Keep reading as we discuss how to test and validate PCB power module performance.
Why PCB power module performance test and validation?
Before a PCB power module is delivered to the final application, it should undergo all forms of performance tests and validation. So, what are the reasons for these procedures?
- Suitability of the module: The first reason is to find out whether the PCB power module meets the performance requirements of the system. If an application requires a certain level of performance, the power module should be tested and validated against such parameters.
- Reliability of the module: Is the PCB power module capable of delivering the best performance under all conditions and circumstances? This is one of the reasons for the validating the performance of the power modules. The PCB is subjected to different conditions where its levels of performance will be tested and validated.
- Validate the functional tests: Performance test is used to validate the functional test that might have been done on the PCB power module. Through the performance test, you will validate al the functional parameters of the PCB power modules.
- Compliance: Does the PCB power module meet the performance standards for the market? One way of establishing this is by conducting performance tests and validation. There are various bodies in the electronic industry that set the performance standards for the power modules.
- Meet the customer needs: As a manufacturer, customer satisfaction should be your top priority. One way of achieving this is by ensuring that the PCB power modules are able to perform to the optimum levels.
- Save the production cost: Testing and validating PCB power modules have direct impact on saving the cost of production. Since these procedures are done before the final product is delivered to the market, they eliminate the costs and expenses that will be incurred for recalls or when the products fail when deployed.
Types of PCB module performance testing
There are various methodologies that are considered when conducting PCB power module performance testing and validation. Each part and aspect of the module is closely analyzed before any conclusion is made. Since a module comprises of several components, special attention is given to each component.
Several tests are conducted on the components and validations given based on their ability to deliver exemplary performance as expected.
Test points tend to focus on the input and output components of the PCB power modules. These are the components that define the way power gets in and out of the system. Here, the testing procedures should focus on the connectivity of the power modules to other components. For example, connection between the module to the power source and to those that need the power.
PCB integration test is another methodology that is used for testing and validating PCB power modules. The method mainly focuses on how the modules are connected to other components in the integrated circuits. In case a system has multiple PCB power modules, integration tests address the interconnection between the modules. If a system has capacitors, the test may entail determining the ability of a capacitor to get full charge.
Integration testing methodologies also ensure that there is minimal loss of signals when the current and signals flow from one component to another. Logi evaluators such as LEDs may be incorporated in the circuits to detect weaknesses in the integrations.
Testing methodologies for PCB power modules
After deciding on the types or forms of the performance testing to be used, the next step entails using various testing methodologies. These performance testing methods include resistive continuity testing, resistance testing and signature comparison testing.
Resistive continuation testing
Also know as isolation testing, this technique involves determining the net resistance of the PCB power modules and their components. Through this test, you will get data on whether the resistance is within the required range. This testing is vital as resistance has a direct impact on the flow of current hence the performance of the power module.
Insulation resistance test
This testing method is closely related to the resistance isolation test as it also involves determining the flow of electric current in a circuit. However, the goal of the insulation test may be to ensure that no current flows through specific regions of electric circuit. This is usually vital for protecting the power module from the dangers of EMI.
Stress testing is also part of the performance test and validation procedures. Its core purpose is to ensure that the PCB power modules will still perform to the optimum levels even when the conditions are outside the specified range.
This type of performance test and validation aims at determining characteristics of all the components that make up the power module. These characteristics include capacitance, frequency, and heat dissipation. Necessary corrective measures may be taken to validate the performance of the power modules.
Let sourcing agent verify the PCB power module test and validation
In the article, it is clear that performance tests are essential for the PCB power modules. Before you buy and use any module, you should ensure that it has undergone through all the necessary tests and validation procedures.
However, the big question is, how do I ensure that my PCB power modules have been tested and validated for performance? This is where the importance of PCB power modules sourcing agents come in. The fact that they have in-depth knowledge about these components means that they have the capacity to verify all the performance tests and validations that have been done on the PCB power modules.
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