Hardware engineering intern interview questions shared by candidates
If you increase the width of a PCB trace, does it decrease or increase the trace impedance?
As you increase trace width, impedance is lowered.
The question is a little tricky (not really tho). The impedance of a straight line is described by Z=R+jX, where R is the resistance and X is the reactance. As the width of the trace is increased, R decreases. If we assume that there is no inductance, then the impedance will go down, as X=1/(jwC), and C=W*L*C0. However, in a very inductive space (like trace is curly and goes around itself a lot), then X = jwL, thus increasing the complex part of the impedance. I would go with the decreasing impedance, as on the PCBs resistance is the dominant term.
If you increase the width of the pcb trace then it will help decreasing the resistance of the PCB trace. I give you a simple analogy if for example we consider the inductance as the negligible amount then, ( R=c (L/A)) where c is resistivity . And we are increasing the Area of cross section that is A. Then that is inversely proportional to the resistance and hence it decreases the impedance.
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