In my first blog post, I asked you to stay tuned for some upcoming news about the ODB++ data model and I’m happy to report the recent announcement of ODB++ v8.1 specification release.
This release is significant in terms of the content it adds to the ODB++ data model. Among the enhancements are:
• Characterization of intentionally shorted nets
• Definition of build-up zones for rigid-flex designs
• Inclusion of virtual documentation data
Previously, there was no established way for a designer to communicate a designed short between two nets aside from a notation, often overlooked or ambiguous. As simple and common as that practice is, fabricators often put a job on hold to confirm the intentional shorts because of the criticality of the issue, thus causing unnecessary delays.
Regarding the rigid-flex build-up zones, this is a prime example of how a data modeling format needs to be inclusive of all technologies, not just the majority. ODB++ has supported the definition of flex and rigid-flex layer types since v8.0. Now the area, or zones, that constitute the various material buildup can be defined so that proper impedance calculations can be applied. This further reduces the manual and redundant effort currently required between design and fabrication.
Lastly, and most significantly, ODB++ now enables the inclusion of content previously conveyed through drawings, documents, and instructions. Think about all the information that needs to be communicated to, fabrication, assembly, and test that is not part of the PCB definition. This includes, but is not limited to, IPC process standards that are to be applied, soldermask finish color, and impedance constraint IDs. So, why do we continue to use multiple, disparate means to communicate what defines a single printed circuit board?
Also, check out this video, How to Export ODB++ Manufacturing Files.