SMT007 Magazine

SMT-Aug2014

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42 SMT Magazine • August 2014 all, one of the attractions of printed electronics is that it supposedly can be done with relatively inexpensive equipment. I-Connect007: What are the benefits of PE in electronics manufacturing? Mantaring: One of the promises of printed electronics is being able to prototype circuits in- expensively and by yourself. This could acceler- ate the development of electronic products in the future. On the other hand, printed electron- ics has the potential of supplying components with special requirements to EMS companies. For example, very thin batteries and very flex- ible assemblies. I-Connect007: What about the challenges in this space? Mantaring: The challenges are producing faster, more efficient, and smaller circuits. This re- quires developing the right materials: that is, the inks that are "printed" on the chosen substrate and the high-resolution printing equipment. I-Connect007: Do you see any opportunities for PE for your company? Mantaring: Not for the products we current- ly manufacture and the markets we currently serve. I-Connect007: How do you think printed elec- tronics will be integrated in the PCBA process? Mantaring: Print technology is already be- ing employed in PCB assembly. In lines where flexibility and quick changeover is a require- ment, solder paste is deposited on the PCB us- ing printing techniques rather than through a stencil. It is not farfetched that in the future certain components, instead of being mounted on the PCB, will be printed on the PCB. For example, different antenna designs can be printed on the PCB when switching production from one transceiver frequency to another in a low-vol- ume, high-mix scenario. Or a computed resistor value can be printed on a PCB after a calibration procedure for highly sensitive electronic assem- blies. I-Connect007: On which industry domains (automotive, consumer electronics, medical, etc.) will printed electronics have a significant effect, and in what way? Mantaring: All of these markets have op- portunities for printed electronics, but because of the existing limitations, early products will likely be in the consumer space where perfor- mance is not critical. I-Connect007: Finally, where do you see the printed electronics industry headed? Will it be an important part in electronics manufactur- ing? Mantaring: Yes, for special components and for niche requirements. sMt The protons and neutrons that make up the nucleus of an atom are themselves made up of fundamental particles known as quarks. arata Yamamoto from the RIKEN Nishina Center for Accelerator-based Science has used supercom- puter simulations to show that quarks can be- have like electrons in a superconductor. The existence of quarks in a semifree state under extreme conditions raises the fascinat- ing question of whether quarks can behave like other free particles such as electrons. The inter- action between quarks is described by a com- plex theory known as quantum chromodynam- ics (QCD). "This is the first implementation of such a model with a population imbalance between flavors," explains Yamamoto. Quarks Behave Like electrons in superconductors CONVERsatIONs WIth...INtEgRatED MICRO-ELECtRONICs INC. continues FeATure SHorT

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