Trace and Via Currents and Temperatures;
The Story that Grew and Grew!

Presenter: Douglas G. Brooks, Ph.D.


Presentation PDF

Meeting Minutes:

6:00 - Informal meet and greet started, participants enjoyed conversations and new introductions
6:30 – Meeting called to order, followed by a quick QandA with Peter Welty with respect to the work that LWTECH does with PCB education.
6:35 – Nominations and discussions by Cherie Litson. Nominations and elections to the board were as follows:
 President – Tim Mullin
 V. Pres - Paul Brendt
 Secretary – Aubrey Moore (absentee)
 Treasurer – Jerome Larez
 Webmaster – Cory Grunwald
6:45 – Cory introduced the website, showed all the open spots, requested content from attendees
6:50 – Doug Brooks main program on thermal properties of vias and traces
8:00 – Meeting adjourned; a short follow up tour of the electronics labs for those interested


In 2015, Doug Brooks and Johannes Adam began modeling the thermal characteristics of traces using software that Dr. Adam had developed. But a funny thing happened when they modeled via temperatures. The results were totally contrary to conventional wisdom. And Doug realized that he needed to show empirically that the results were valid.

Prototron stepped up and provided the boards to empirically test the via results. And another funny thing happened. This grew into another empirical study, which grew into another empirical study... and a book was born! By the time he was through, Doug had studied trace and via temperatures, trace fusing characteristics, current densities, thermal conductivity coefficients (Appendix 1), resistivity measurements (Appendix 2), and even board x-rays (Chapter 13)!

Come hear Doug describe all that has happened (especially the via results) and the help he has received along the way, from people as far away as New Brunswick (part of Chapter 7 and Appendix 1) and people (Prototron, lots of chapters) as close as Redmond. Even from a Seattle firefighter (Chapter 12)!

Speaker Biography:

Doug Brooks was president of UltraCAD Design, Inc., from its founding in 1992 until he retired about three years ago. His educational background includes a BS/EE and MS/EE from Stanford and a PhD from the University of Washington. He has written two previous books on PCB Signal Integrity Issues and countless articles. He has been giving presentations on PCB design topics around the world for the past 20 years. Now that he has finished this book, he says that this might be his last presentation --- ever!

Doug's books can be found HERE.


May 4th, 2016
6:00pm - 8:00pm


Lake Washington Institute of Technology - Kirkland Campus
Room A102
11605 132nd Ave NE
Kirkland, WA 98034

Park in the south lot off of 132nd Ave NE. Room A102 is located in the south-east corner of the building, on the 1st floor.