July 14, 2011 -- Delivering power to the chips on your PCB (printed-circuit board) is no longer a simple proposition. You used to be able to connect the ICs to power and ground using thin traces that took little space. As chips got faster, you fed them power with low-impedance sources, such as a power plane on your PCB. For a time, just using a power and ground plane on a four-layer board would solve most power-integrity problems. In addition to the power planes, you could decouple every IC to solve any niggling power problems with your design.
These days, though, PCB areas — along with their cost and your schedule — are tight, and these issues bring power consequences along with them.
By Paul Rako, Technical Editor, EDN Magazine
This brief introduction has been excerpted from the original copyrighted article.