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Why is temperature of printed boards so important?

Because there are limiting temperatures for operation:

  • Secure maximum operational temperature of components
  • Glass transition temperature of the board material
  • Stability of solder joints

Why should temperature be known as good as possible?

Because too many items depend on temperature:

  • Material properties, e.g. electric resistance of traces and thus voltage feed or impedance for transmission of signals
  • Performance of components
  • Derating of power for hot ambients needs knowledge of component temperature

Why don't simplifying spread sheet calculations work?

Because the local thermal conductivity (the artwork) controls the temperature of a component. It is impossible to include copper patterns, drills and influence from other components in a simple formula, a data sheet or a simple network. Better do a holistic simulation using dedicated software.