I'm looking to design a PCB that can reliably survive constant impact. The board will be rigidly mounted to an enclosure that will protect the board from actually hitting anything. The nature of the impact would be similar to a bowling ball, or a hammer head – not what I would consider vibration, but frequent hits from multiple directions.
As part of the device functionality, I want to measure the acceleration of the board, so dampening the impact in any way is not preferable. I don't have any measured acceleration values (G's) to provide as a baseline, and I don't really have any experience in this area. As such, I have a few closely related generic questions:
- What is the most force that would be OK on a board with no impact hardening measures taken? (Am I worrying too much about a non-issue?)
- Are there any design practices that should be followed for the PCB?
- What are the weak points in a design that lead to mechanical failure?
- Are there parts that should be avoided for a more robust design?
- At what force levels should I start worrying about the safety of the parts themselves?