Printed Circuit Board Design Reuse 101

Most people consider “reuse” as a process of using things for another purpose. In contrast, it has a different meaning in the field of electrical engineering. Reuse technology pertains to a method of reapplying and storing of electronic circuitry for future use.

Electrical Reuse

PCB Another term for this kind of technology is “logical reuse”. It has two forms which are electrical reuse and physical reuse. When you say electrical reuse, it refers to choosing and reapplying of electrical circuits in a printed circuit board design. On the other hand, physical reuse pertains to choosing and reapplying of the actual PCB layout.
Sadly, both of these formats are not widely used today. The main reason why PCB design engineers choose the traditional way is because of their skepticism about unproven and new technologies. They prefer to utilize traditional methods and do not realize the advantages of using new technology in terms of accuracy and productivity.

Brief History

The reuse technology started between 1990 to 2000. The method used by software vendors was cut and paste. They relied mainly on the reconcilliation process of Enterprise Core Objects (ECO) to deal with inconsistencies brought by the method of cut and paste. However, this new technology introduced some circuitry problems. These problems, as a result, caused hesitation to the majority of people. That time, they realized that this type of methodology was not yet developed enough to become helpful in the printed circuit board designs.

After several years, some computer-aided design (CAD) companies decided to experiment with the electrical reuse. They believed that the new technology will improve with the application of better algorithms. Using these algorithms, the capabilities were expanded to consider more data during the generation process. The use of this concept was very timely because most data introduced also this time was part-specific.

Infusion of large component data into printed circuit boards was made possible by using CIS, component information systems. The introduction of this type of system helped many engineers to output additional data. These data were necessary in the reuse building process.

Advantages of PCB Design Reuse

Printed Circuit Board1. Reducing the manpower
Printed circuit board design reuse can reduce the manpower needed to do the task. It can also shorten the design process. Thus, it can help you save up and earn more money.

2. Improving the product quality
It can leverage elements of integrated circuits (IC) or PCB design. It allows the use of pre-validated intellectual properties (IP) and promotes them to a reuse library.

3. Benefiting from the team design
The team design enables simultaneous design of reuse module with the board design. With the printed circuit board design reuse, you do not have to archive and complete the reuse modules to define a circuit.

4. Marketing in shorter time
With the advantages mentioned above, the development of designs becomes faster. The main factor here is the application of already made and proven components to minimize the time needed for the development. Thus, the product can be made available in the market as soon as possible.

5. Increasing your profit
When you use a reuse module, you get to save both cost and time. And when you save time to create the product, the design cycles are shortened and more products are made. Clearly, you can increase your profit and provide competitive pricing.


You have now known the meaning of “reuse technology” which is a method of reapplying and storing of electronic circuitry for future use. This method has several advantages such as reducing the manpower, improving the product quality, benefiting from the team design, marketing in shorter time and increasing your profit.