The unloaded PCB appears green because thin sheets of green plastic have been applied to both sides (otherwise the PCB would appear pale yellow). Called solder masks, these sheets cover all exposed metal other than the component pads and holes so that errant solder can not inadvertently short (or electrically connect) the printed wires. All metal surfaces other than the exposed pads and holes (i.e., the wires) are underneath the solder mask. Not infrequently, blue or even red solder masks are used.
A first look at a circuit diagram may be confusing, but if you can read a subway map, you can read schematics. The purpose is the same: getting from point A to point B. Literally, a circuit is the path that allows electricity to flow. If you know what to look for, it’ll become second nature. While at first you’ll just be reading them, eventually you will start creating your own. This guide will show you a few of the common symbols that you are sure to see in your future electrical engineering career.
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