Remtec Inc. has added a new universal finish of Electroless Nickel/Electroless Palladium/Immersion Gold (ENEPIG) as a standard finish to its umbrella of fabrication methods. The new finish resolves a problem of intermetalics detrimental to the reliability of solder joints (black pad formations) and wire bonding connections. This “universal finish” is suitable for virtually all assembly techniques such as Au and Al wire bonding, SMT soldering, welding and brazing including AuSn attach in a wide variety of packaging designs.  

In addition to the versatility of Remtec’s new Ni/Pd/Au ENEPIG process, the new universal finish eliminates the need of multiple processing finishes and labor intensive masking. Originally developed for the PCB industry due to a sharp rise in gold price, the process results in significant cost savings in both labor and materials and subsequently lower cost products. 

As well as lowering costs, Remtec’s use of this universal finish improves the quality of metallized ceramics and packages, permits higher performance in electronic assemblies and creates consistent products with higher production yields.

Remtec’s standard metallization technologies - such as PCTF (Plated Copper on Thick Films), AgENIG (electroless nickel over silver), DBC and Zero Pullback metallization with castellations, plugged via holes, embedded passives and multilayers - are easily compatible with the ENEPIG process. The new technology also permits the use of decreased line and space dimensions which significantly increases circuit density in smaller electronic packages. Remtec’s metallized ceramic substrates and packages that use the ENEPIG process benefit from the lower cost and improved performance.

After developing the low cost finish, Remtec commercialized the new technology and switched many commercial, industrial and military products to the new process. Products already benefiting from this universal finish are RF power amplifiers, mixers, LNA's, high speed switching MOSFET devices and laser diode assemblies.