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Epec's Blog | Electronics Manufacturing Solutions

Paul Tome

Paul Tome
As Product Manager of Flex & Rigid-Flex Circuits, Paul oversees our entire flex & rigid-flex product line. Though Paul's main responsibility is customer technical support, he is involved in each project from the beginning conceptual stages to delivery. He works directly with customers on their specific design requirements and makes sure that each product is designed correctly, troubleshooting any issues that may arise in the process. Paul came to Epec with 24 years of a great variety of experience in the electronics industry. He has been involved in all aspects of the industry including sales, engineering, and manufacturing. He has worked with PCBs and equipment manufacturing and has also been the owner of an engineering service and trust bureau. Previously, he was president at Advanced Circuit Services. Paul's experience and expertise make him an indispensable part of Epec's team. Paul holds a mechanical engineering degree from Seneca College.

Recent Posts


Common Prototype vs. Production Failures in Flexible Circuit Boards

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on March 6, 2020 at 9:44 AM

The argument can be made that the toughest environment for a flexible circuit boards is the prototyping phase of the design development. During this process, the circuit is potentially installed and removed multiple times as the form, fit, and function are evaluated and qualified. There’s the opportunity for the flex circuit to be inadvertently mishandled, dropped, bent beyond the design limits, etc.

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Using Rigid-Flex PCBs to Improve Design Reliability - Q&A

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on March 3, 2020 at 9:46 AM

At the conclusion of our webinar, Using Rigid-Flex PCBs to Improve Design Reliability, we had several questions submitted to our presenter, Product Manager of Flex & Rigid-Flex Circuits, Paul Tome. We compiled these into a readable format on our blog.

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Flex Circuit Design Challenges: Electrical vs. Mechanical

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on February 18, 2020 at 9:21 AM

Flex and rigid-flex circuit boards are a combination of both electrical and mechanical requirements that allow for solutions to many tight packaging requirements. However, this combination is also the potential source of design challenges as some electrical requirements can have a negative impact on the mechanical bend capabilities of flex circuits. If not, correctly addressed the reliability of the finished design may be compromised.

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EMI and RF Shielding Options for Flexible Circuits

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on February 4, 2020 at 9:03 AM

Flexible circuits, like other electrical interconnects, are subject to either receiving or emitting electromagnetic (EM) and or radio frequency (RF) interference. For critical designs, if allowed to occur, the performance of the assembly, or that of other local assemblies, can be compromised to the point of becoming non-functional. The difference between EM and RF interference is the frequency of the “disturbance,” with RF being in the radio frequency range and EM being typically 500 MHZ and higher. There are many potential sources of both types of interference within an assembly.

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Challenges in Dynamic Flexible Circuit Board Design

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on January 21, 2020 at 9:43 AM

Dynamic flexible circuit boards have the capability of solving many interconnect and packaging challenges in designs that require repetitive motion. They allow for extremely high-density interconnects while consuming a very small amount of space. However, these applications have a different set of design rules than that of a “one-time” or “bend-to-fit” static application.

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Differences Between Coverlay and Flexible Solder Mask

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on January 7, 2020 at 9:39 AM

Flexible circuits have two material options available to encapsulate the exposed outer layer circuitry: polyimide coverlay and flexible solder mask. While both perform the same basic function of insulating the external layer circuitry, each has different characteristics and capabilities that address specific design requirements.

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Various Stiffener Materials for Flexible Circuit Boards

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on April 23, 2019 at 12:42 PM

Flexible circuit boards are necessary in numerous applications where a design requires the circuit to be bent within the electrical equipment or electronic device. However, it is not desired to have the flexible circuit board bend adjacent to connectors, mounted components, solder joints, and hole patterns. In these instances, a stiffener needs to be designed in to add rigidity and stability so that the flex circuit performs reliably.

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Flexible Circuit Board Material Selection

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on April 15, 2019 at 9:54 AM

Selecting the optimum flex circuit board material is a key element to the success of a flexible circuit design. A wide variety of materials and configurations are available to address the needs of today’s design applications.

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Design Comparison: Flex Circuit with Stiffeners vs. Rigid-Flex PCB

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on April 2, 2019 at 10:49 AM

When developing a flex PCB based design, one of the most common early decisions is whether a flex circuit with stiffener(s) will meet the design requirements or if a rigid-flex construction is necessary or more effective. While there is some overlap between the two methodologies, there are significant capability, performance, and cost differences that require review to ensure a successful design.

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Integrating Flex with Rigid PCB to Improve Design

Written by Paul Tome
Posted on March 27, 2019 at 9:49 AM

The integration of a flex circuit(s) with rigid PCBs into a rigid-flex configuration can solve many of today’s design challenges. The combination of the mechanical capabilities of flex circuits with the functionality of rigid PCBs is a solution that provides many benefits, including improved reliability, tighter packaging capabilities, high speed signal performance, reduced assembly costs, and opportunities for further overall design packaging reductions.

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