Building Boards for the Intel Edison

I’ve recently spent some time getting familiar with the Intel Edison. The Edison has a dual-core 500MHZ Intel Atom processor, with built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. It comes with 1GB of RAM, 4GB of eMMC internal storage, and a USB 2.0 OTG controller. It doesn’t bring any of the connectors (power or signal) out in a usable form. Rather, it’s designed to be plugged onto another board through a 70-pin high density connector from Hirose.

I designed a small board with I2C (both 5V and 3V connectors) and a micro-SD card slot. My board still doesn’t have the power or console connectors. For that, I’m using a base board from Sparkfun.

Figure 1

Step one of the assembly process, is, of course, to design and layout the board. Using the Sparkfun open source designs as a jumping off point, I ended up with the nice, compact layout (1.2″ x 1.75″) shown below in Figure 2.

Figure 2

After getting the files ready and placing a turnkey order on our website, I followed the board through with my camera. Here it is after offline setup, with the parts ready for robot pick-and-place:

Figure 3

In one of our Mydata My500 solder paste printers:

Figure 4

On the pick-and-place machine, with solder paste, but before any components are placed:

Figure 5

The parts plate in the machine:

Figure 6


With most of the components placed:

Figure 7

Through the reflow oven, prior to final inspection:

Figure 8

The final product, top view:

Figure 9

I abbreviated the process a bit, but those are the major process steps along the way.

Duane Benson
Happy birthday (month) Nikola Tesla