GROUND PLANES AND SHIELDS
SIMPLE TECHNIQUES USE READILY AVAILABLE MATERIALS TO EXTEND SURFACE MOUNT BREADBOARD USE TO R.F. RANGE
When dealing with R.F., High Speed Digital, as well as certain Analog circuit prototypes, It is often desirable to incorporate Ground Planes, Shields, and Enclosures. The following applications make use of common readily available materials found at hardware stores, hobby shops, or obtainable from specialty catalogs, including Foil Tapes, Thin Metal sheets (copper or brass), and conventional Copper Clad Laminate. These methods permit the fabrication of localized circuit shields and ground planes when desired, and extend the versatility of Surfboards.
The circuit example above shows model 9081, 9161, and 9162 Surfboards attached to a piece of copper clad serving as a common ground plane. The boards may be attached by adhesive, or soldered in place with wire straps tied to the ground plane.
Local shields and enclosures (above) can be fabricated from thin (.008-.010 in. typ.) copper or brass sheet. The thin materials are easy to bend and cut, and can be soldered in place if desired. Aluminum or steel may be used as well, but may not be easily soldered. Combine with ground plane if needed.
Surfboard models with SIP pins can also be accommodated as shown above . Shields and ground planes may be cut and attached to the back of a Surfboard, or boards can be enclosed in small shapes formed out of thin metal stock, taking care not to short the pins.
The local hardware store offers a multitude of enclosure possibilities. Standard fittings made of copper or brass can serve as inexpensive, and customizable housings, and can be soldered to readily. Additionally, a range of other fittings and aluminum extrusions can be utilized if solder connections are not needed, or connection is to be made by mechanical means.
In addition to the above methods, Copper or Foil tapes may be used. Some specialty catalogs offer these tapes in a variety of widths and adhesive arrangements. Use epoxy or other suitable adhesives to secure shields and ground planes when solder joints can not be used, or to secure boards to enclosures.