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Posted: May 26, 2008
Jisso forum draws technologists, academics
(Nanowerk News) The 2nd Jisso International Forum was held at Georgia Tech May 21-22, bringing together technologists and researchers from industry and academia, from North America, Europe and Asia.
Sponsored by the Jisso International Council and IPC, the two-day seminar highlighted the advancements in packaging and interconnect technology, as well as issues facing technologists everywhere – i.e., environmental regulations. Two days of closed meetings took place earlier in the week.
First of all, what does Jisso mean?
“Jisso is a term that we inherited from Japan and we interpret that to mean the total packaging solution,” said Denny Fritz of MacDermid and chairman of the Jisso North American Council. “The name Jisso is thrown about for a number of applications; our committee looks at it as related to packaging issues.”
The Jisso International Council got its start about 10 years ago as an offshoot of the now-defunct Surface Mount Council, according to Fritz.
The Jisso International Council is composed of members of standards organizations in the global electronics industry, including IPC, iNEMI, JEDEC and Jisso Japan. The JIC’s members help coordinate the release of roadmaps in their respective organizations, Fritz explained, and they strive to integrate their efforts and help streamline the standards process.
The JIC has focused on everything from embedded components to optoelectronics in recent years.
The seminar opened with a presentation by Rao Tummala of Georgia Tech – he’s the founder of the school’s Microsystems Packaging Resource Center and the author of the “Microelectronics Packaging Handbook.”
Tummala said the center tries to look 3-10 years ahead, and he sees electronics moving beyond the scope of Moore’s Law. While the U.S. focuses on Moore’s Law, Europe is looking at more than Moore, said Tummala.
“I like ‘More Than More Than Moore,’” quipped Tummala.
Jan Vardaman, president of TechSearch International, said cell phone development is still driving packaging volume and technology. Mobiles now contain an average of 15-20 CSPs, including wafer-level packages and SiPs. Routers are driving high-pin-count packages, with up to 32 layers, 13 BGAs and 46 CSPs. And I/O numbers are continuing to rise, Vardaman said – for example, a board in NEC’s SX-9 supercomputer features a flip chip with 8,960 I/O per die.
But Stanley Bentley, president of EMS provider Diversified Systems, said any sea changes in packaging and interconnect mean massive capital investment by companies like his. Bentley said EMS companies must invest in research, processes and equipment.
Lean 6 and Black Belt certification are mandatory, said Bentley. He pointed out a positive trend: Fabrication and assembly engineers are more knowledgeable than ever before, out of necessity. “With enough time, anyone can make one of anything” is no longer a valid concept, Bentley noted.
Several speakers discussed the current state of nanotechnology and the safety of nanomaterials. Kristin Abkemeier of Lux Research said that the nanotechnologies ready to go online are not disruptive. And she noted that, concerning nanotech, “The hype isn’t what it was a couple of years ago.”
Vladimir Murashow of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health said that the nanomaterials being manufactured should not behave any differently than fine and ultrafine particles. At this point, there’s no reason to adopt new safety procedures for nanomaterials, Murashow said.
On the environmental side, Krista Botsford, president and founder of Eco-Tech Partners, compared the environmental regulations facing electronics manufacturers – EU RoHS, China RoHS, South Korea RoHS, WEEE, and the EU’s REACh.
With states such as California, New York, Rhode Island, Oregon and Washington enacting RoHS/WEEE regulations, the potential exists for manufacturers to be within code in one state but in violation in another, Botsford said. A federal RoHS/WEEE regulation would eliminate state-by-state redundancy and conflicts, while easing management’s efforts at tracking compliance.
Botsford also advocated changing the term halogen-free to halogen-safe. “You need the halogens to live your everyday lives,” Botsford said. “It’s only certain elements of those that cause a problem.”
She said it was her opinion that the WEEE legislation, unlike RoHS, is actually a necessary regulation.
On the reliability front, Myra Torres, the assistant research director for prognostics at the University of Maryland’s Center for Advanced Life Cycle Engineering (CALCE), said that 60% of all electronic product failures can’t be duplicated. Non-destructive failure analysis is becoming more expensive and time-consuming, but consumers demand quick failure analysis.
Warranties have their own dynamic now – Microsoft’s Xbox experienced a 30% failure rate in the field, forcing the company to up the warranty from 90 days to one year to three years. And the demand for reliability has little to do with the cost of the product – Torres said research showed that cell phone users expected about the same level of reliability that airlines expect from a 747.
Embedded technology may be about to take off, according to Karen Carpenter, senior analyst for TechSearch International. She gave a timeline for the development, or lack of development, of embedded technology. The concept has been around for decades, but there were few embedded standards until the 1990s. Plus, there was a lack of good design and modeling tools. Then the downturn of 2001-2003 stifled much embedded research, Carpenter said. And there was no reliable interconnect method, until recently.
But now, embedded standards abound. Modeling and simulation software and test equipment are available. And microvia technology answered the age-old question, “How do you connect it to the surface?” explained Carpenter. But much work remains, particularly regarding the placement of both active and passive components.
A big part of the JIC’s mission involves roadmaps. Jack Fisher of Interconnect Analysis Inc. said packaging technology is the big driver of boards now. Laminate SiP technology is dominant, but the influence of ceramics is growing. Embedded components such as 0201s and 01005s are not manufactured in large numbers outside Japan.
For smaller via sizes and higher aspect ratios, fabricators need better plating throwing power, along with improved particulate controls through the entire hole, Fisher said.
Speaking of roadmaps, Fisher said, “Five years ago we said copper was going to die at two gigabits.”