Behind the Design: Valtronic SA

By vernwnek

This is the seventh post in a series showcasing the winners of the 2014 Technology Leadership Awards. View the previous ones here.

Runner up in the Industrial Control, Instrumentation & Medical category: Valtronic SA, Switzerland

Valtronic Logo

Design: Ultimate 8 channels miniaturized MRI integrated receiver module with lots of channel separation

Design team: Gabriel Gay, Van Ly Mai, Cristian Anton, Bert de Vries

Design challenges:

  • All components had to be non-magnetic or low magnetic.
  • Miniaturization drove use of ~500 passive SMD 01005. All (9) layers are HDI.
  • 5mm BGA (2 components): Careful placement of the decoupling capacitors, and management of analog/digital signal separation.
  • Used flip chip mounting to minimize connections from the chip to the board; placed all on one side for manufacturing reasons, but this required localized shielding.

Design tools and team comments:

  • Xpedition® Enterprise
  • “The 3D viewer was utilized and later in the design .idf export and .dxf import were a must to make iterations to reduce the final size of the package.”
  • “Clusters were used to simplify the placement process. “Copy circuit” is a must to make sure we had similar placement and routing for each of the receiver channels.”
  • “CES was especially useful to control the differential pairs.”
  • “We exported CCZ files to share the layout for design review with our customer. We also used DxPDF to share valuable data for design review and Part Lister to review BOMs.”
  • We utilized smart utilities, dynamic tune, and outline optimizer along with other capabilities.

Valtronic Award Winning PCB Design


Judge’s comments:

  • “This was a well-documented and excellent solution.”
  • “Good EMI/EMC considerations were given.”

About the Technology Leadership Awards

Started in 1988, this program is the longest running competition of its kind in the electronic design automation (EDA) industry. It recognizes engineers and designers who use innovative methods and design tools to address today’s complex PCB systems design challenges and produce industry-leading products. See the full list of 2014 winners here.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at