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PCBs get greener

As environmental requirements change, what moves are underway to replace FR4 with ‘greener’ materials? By Eric Russell.

The writing has been on the wall for conventional FR4 epoxy glass pcb laminate for some time. The reason is the adverse effects of halogens incorporated into the epoxy resin in order to meet industry standards such as UL 94-V0.

But the picture has recently changed. The timetable of European legislation requiring the use of halogen free flame retardants has been extended and changes will not now become binding until 2008. But while the legislative pressure has been reduced, safety, environmental and marketing pressures are increasing and pushing the introduction of halogen free FR4.

Graham Pitcher

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