The PCB stackup plays a crucial role in achieving optimal product performance. A well-designed PCB stackup can ensure adequate signal quality, reduce electromagnetic emissions, minimize production costs and improve board manufacturability. The Layer Stack Manager in SOLIDWORKS PCB gives designers the ability to fully define the PCB stackup and save configurations for future use.
Accessing the Layer Stack Manager
The Layer Stack Manager can be accessed via the ribbon:
Home > Board > Layer Stack Manager or by Right click > Options > Layer Stack Manager
Creating New Layers
Layers can be added to the stack up including: signal, internal planes, dielectrics and overlays. Many pre-set layer stacks exist and can be used as a starting point for your unique configurations. A layer can be moved up and down the stack or deleted as necessary.
Fields in the layer stack manager can be modified such as: layer name, material, thickness, and dielectric constant. As changes are made to individual layer thicknesses, the total thickness updates automatically, a useful tool when dealing with mechanical design constraints.
Setting up Drill Pairs
Drill pairs are necessary when creating blind, buried, or through-hole vias in your design. Drill pairs simplify the routing process and ensure accurate drill files can be generated for fabrication. The Drill-Pair Manager can be accessed from within the Layer Stack Manager.
Assigning Net to Planes
Net names can be assigned to internal plane layers as needed. Simply double click the desired internal plane from the layer stack.
A dialog will appear allowing the assignment of nets from your design.