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Industry News / Materials/Packages

SCHOTT Electronic Packaging Protects High Frequency Electronics

September 28, 2010
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Various parameters need to be considered before deciding what the best housing solution would be for sensitive high-frequency electronics. SCHOTT Electronic Packaging provides assistance in this area. The company is the only European supplier that offers glass-to-metal sealing technology (GTMS) as well as low and high temperature cofired ceramics from a single source. This makes it possible for SCHOTT to develop the most suitable and cost-efficient hermetic housings for specialized microwave and radiofrequency applications.

High-frequency applications are evolving in many industries, be it for avionics applications, automotive and industrial sensors, telecommunications or medical engineering. These sensitive high-performance electronics require hermetic housings. Sealing technologies based on glass and ceramics allow for gas-tight electrical and optical feedthroughs. Because every technology has its pros and cons, SCHOTT supports its customers in selecting solutions for low and high volumes.

“Full ceramic, ceramic-to-metal or glass-to-metal sealed housings offer hermetic protection and are insensitive to vibrations, corrosive substances and temperature fluctuations,” said Robert Hettler, Research and Development Manager at SCHOTT Electronic Packaging in Landshut, Germany, and adds, “The number and complexity of conductors and components that need to be interconnected inside a given space determine what packaging technology would be most appropriate.”

Glass-to-metal sealed housings are usually the ideal form of hermetic protection. Because glass is so versatile, it can be used in a wide variety of ways to provide optimal hermetic protection for electronics and opto-electronics. However, when size or weight matters, multilayer ceramics can be the housing technology of choice. They allow for complex structures of electrical, optical, and thermal interfaces to be integrated into the housing – a must for miniaturized components.

Small and lightweight packages for complex applications are achieved using multilayer ceramics. Here, metallic lines and vias are applied to thin sheets of ceramic with the help of punching processes and silk screen printing. By stacking and laminating several layers in a cofiring process, a three-dimensional housing is formed that can contain a highly complex electrical wiring scheme and become part of the Printed Circuit Board (PCB) inside the package.

High temperature cofired ceramics (HTCC) are used when the signal path is rather short and superior mechanical stability and heat dissipation is required. On the other hand, low temperature cofired ceramics (LTCC) allow for high conductivity metallization like gold or silver to be used. In combination with a low dielectric constant, they are ideal for high-frequency applications with extended path lengths. In addition, they allow for the integration of passives as well as sidewall metallization.

Together with its partner VIA electronic, SCHOTT Electronic Packaging supports its customers in designing the optimal packages for their applications. Simulations allow for predictions on material behavior under high-frequency conditions, including the examination of thermal performance and mechanical resistance. The capabilities cover the design of electronic and opto-electronic components, as well as process optimization for prototype to serial production.

As a business unit of the international technology group SCHOTT, Electronic Packaging (EP) is a manufacturer of housings and other components for the reliable, long-term protection for sensitive electronics. The core technologies are glass-to-metal and ceramic-to-metal sealing, thermal sensing components as well as a variety of cutting-edge specialty glass competences. With 1,500 employees at five production locations and several competence centers around the world, local customer support and co-developments for individual packaging solutions are at the heart of the business, serving the world’s leading manufacturers in the automotive, data- and telecommunication, sensors and semiconductors, consumer electronics, dental care, home appliances, laser as well as security and tracking industries.


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