Douglas Brooks has a BS/EE and an MS/EE from Stanford and a PhD from the University of Washington. For the last 27 years he has owned a small engineering service firm and written numerous technical articles on printed circuit board design and signal integrity issues, and has published two books on these topics. He recently published PCB Trace and Via Temperatures: The Complete Analysis, 2nd Edition, with Johannes Adam in 2017.
Brooks has given seminars several times a year all over the US, as well as Moscow, China, Taiwan, Japan, Israel, and Canada. His primary focus has been on making complex technical issues easily understood by those without advanced degrees. Brooks is now retired and lives with his wife of over 50 years in Issaquah, WA. His Web page is https://www.ultracad.com.
The ability to analyze and predict the current/temperature effects of isolated traces is helpful, but the actual temperature of a trace may be different because of uncertainties in the actual trace thickness or board material thermal conductivity coefficient. This article traces the effort to see what PCB board parameters have the most impact in determining trace temperatures, followed by a look at related PCB design considerations. Read on to learn more.