SMC 2014 Speaker - John Hunt, ASE - Abstract

John Hunt
Director of Engineering, Product Promotion
ASE (US) Inc.

Polymer Innovations for Mobile Packaging Applications
Portable electronics have become ubiquitous tools for everyday living, from simple communication devices to complex social networking tools.  Consumers expect ever more functionality with every generation of product, be it a cell phone, tablet or gaming device.  With the consumer’s relentless quest for more features, faster processing, more memory, smaller size, and lower cost in their portable devices, the industry is turning to new foundry and packaging technologies to meet their goals.  As we have tried to maintain the pace of Moore’s law, the introduction of advanced technology nodes has placed new challenges on the structures, materials, and processes used for packaging. 

The drive for size reduction in portable devices has also resulted in smaller and more compact device and package structures, often with increased complexity.  Paradigm shifts in technology have also introduced new packaging requirements. As an example, the rapid evolution of sensors and actuators into MEMS technology has rapidly expanded their use into portable devices. This has often introduced the need for new material and process complexities as each MEMS application has generated its own particular packaging requirements.

As we go forward, newer evolutionary and revolutionary technologies that are currently under development will find their way into these mobile devices.  These are often variations of standard packaging, including Copper Pillar Flipchip, Fanout wafer level packaging, and variations of embedding technology using Substrate and Printed Circuit Board technologies. 

The IC industry structure has also been evolving from the older unified IDM model into separate entities such as Wafer Foundries, Fabless Companies, IC Design Houses, and Packaging & Test houses.  These all rely on the materials suppliers, equipment suppliers, process materials and specialty consumables producers in order to be successful.   To move forward, the industry must take full advantage of the symbiotic relationship between these different layers of the supply chain.  The knowledge base of materials, processes, and equipment from both the IC and assembly industries are necessary to develop the inventions and innovations necessary to meet the requirements of today’s end users.  The forging of new partnerships is encouraging the timely development of new materials and processes.  Efficient feedback of information can facilitate the material and process development iterations that will allow this evolution to be a technical and business success.