Mentor Graphics Unveils PADS PCB Product Creation Platform


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Mentor Graphics Corporation today announced a comprehensive product-creation platform based on PADS PCB software that enables individual engineers and small teams to solve the engineering challenges involved in creating today's electronic products. With increasing systems design complexity and the need for printed circuit board (PCB), mechanical and systems engineers to access easy-to-deploy tools, the PADS platform has been extended to enable engineers to develop PCB-based systems from concept through manufacturing hand-off.

The product creation process is much more than schematic capture and board layout. Engineers must address many other issues for a successful product design, including component selection, signal and power integrity, electronic cooling, form and fit, and design for manufacturability. With this release, the PADS platform extends its product-creation solution by adding PADS HyperLynx® DC Drop and PADS FloTHERM® XT tools for high productivity at unprecedented price-performance.

"The complexity of systems design keeps climbing, as design teams continue to aim for higher levels of capability and performance in their products. Systems design for products of all types entails a host of electrical, mechanical, thermal and manufacturing complexities with which design teams must contend," said Laurie Balch, chief analyst, Gary Smith EDA. "It is essential for EDA vendors to help design engineers successfully tackle these issues through their design tools, as Mentor is demonstrating with its latest investment in its PADS platform portfolio."

"With increasing complexity in electronics systems, engineers need to develop with the whole product in mind," said Barry Olney, owner of In-Circuit Design. "Having access to a design tool that encompasses PCB design, coupled with comprehensive simulation and analysis, really gives design engineers the confidence that their products will be delivered on schedule and at the highest performance and reliability. At the end of the day, the PADS platform delivers a real competitive advantage."

DC Drop for Power Integrity Analysis

By adding world-class HyperLynx DC Drop analysis to the PADS platform, engineers can create electronic products ranging from low-power wearable devices to products that require high-power processors. The increasing number of power rails in modern devices can result in non-functional or hard-to-debug design if analysis isn't used early in the design process.

The PADS HyperLynx DC Drop product quickly identifies problem areas in the design which would be difficult to find in the lab on a prototype. The DC Drop tool quickly provides investigative solutions which the user can apply in an easy-to-use environment.  Results can be validated in layout to ensure that appropriate guidelines were followed, thus reducing prototype spins. With the DC Drop product, engineers can:

  • Optimize the power distribution network (PDN) for efficient, clean, multi-voltage power to ICs.
  • Quickly analyze voltage drops caused by insufficient copper across power supply rails, thus eliminating time-consuming troubleshooting of prototypes.
  • Identify layout areas that contain excessive current density so they can be eliminated early.

PADS FloTHERM XT Tool for Electronics Cooling

As electronics become smaller, faster, and more densely packaged, designers need to consider complete thermal effects to ensure product reliability. Physical testing is not always possible due to time and cost but, with the PADS product creation platform, a system's thermal profile requirements can be achieved quickly, easily, and affordably. The PADS FloTHERM XT product is an award-winning electronics cooling solution that can be used as early as placement to identify thermal effects of the entire system. Using the SmartParts™ feature, designers can build simple models in minutes, apply complex mechanical parts directly from MCAD, create custom CAD geometry with ease, and import detailed electronic assemblies from EDA tools.

Key benefits of PADS FloTHERM XT include:

  • A CAD-centric solution for thermal simulation and electronic cooling.
  • Consideration for all thermal aspects of the design, including package selection, PCB layout, board structure, and enclosure design.
  • Direct interfaces with all major MCAD vendors and all vendor-neutral file formats.
  • Automatic report generation via HTML, PDF, or Microsoft® Word.

"Mentor is unrivaled in delivering technology innovation that enables competitive advantage for our customers. With Xpedition for enterprises, to PADS for the mainstream market, our solutions portfolio continues to evolve allowing the market to tackle the most complex product creation challenges," stated A.J. Incorvaia, vice president and general manager of Mentor Graphics Board Systems Division. "Our new PADS release with thermal and voltage analysis capabilities provides an intuitive solution that helps individual electronic designers go from design concept through manufacturing."

Product Availability

The new PADS release with PADS HyperLynx DC Drop and PADS FloTHERM XT electronic cooling options will be available in July. The PADS HyperLynx DC Drop tool starts at $4995 (USD). The PADS FloTHERM XT tool starts at US$12,500.To learn more, consult a Mentor Graphics sales representative or call 1-800-547-3000. Additional product information can be found at www.pads.com.

About Mentor Graphics

Mentor Graphics Corporation is a world leader in electronic hardware and software design solutions, providing products, consulting services and award-winning support for the world's most successful electronic, semiconductor and systems companies. Established in 1981, the company reported revenues in the last fiscal year of approximately $1.18 billion. Corporate headquarters are located at 8005 S.W. Boeckman Road, Wilsonville, Oregon 97070-7777. Visit www.mentor.com.

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