Printed Circuit Board Assembly & PCB Design SMT Electronics Assembly Manufacturing Forum

Printed Circuit Board Assembly & PCB Design Forum

SMT electronics assembly manufacturing forum.

Thermal relief question

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Thermal relief question | 8 June, 2016

We all know that whenever possible, we want thermal relief between the barrel/pad and the copper foil to make it easier to properly solder that through hole connector.

My question is, assuming there is no connection from the barrel to a copper layer (or in this case, 4 sheets of copper that aren't connected to it) but the gap is narrow, is there any reason to think that expanding that gap would provide any additional thermal relief? Does heat flow jump a narrow gap easily enough that additional relief might be of some benefit?

Edited to add that the barrels that we're having problems soldering to have a 4 mil gap between them and the copper layers they not connected to. The other two have 10 mil gaps and no issues, hence the question.

The balance between scorching the board and 50% top side fill is touchy with this one.

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Thermal relief question | 11 June, 2016

Hi Steve ... There are arguments between fabricators and thermal relievers about adding non-connected copper tabs to barrels in hopes of providing thermal relief, but that's not what you're talking about, I believe.

I don't foresee an issue moving the non-connected copper plain away from a barrel to reduce the heat in that barrel.

I assume you've considered reducing the heat in the copper plain and filling the barrel with conductive material.

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Thermal relief question | 16 June, 2016

Hi Dave,

I'll ask them if they consider it on the next spin....can't see any reason it would have any negative effects. Thanks!


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