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PCB-Nov2017

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12 The PCB Magazine • November 2017 Introduction The electronics industry is the world's largest and most robust market. It is also a bulwark of American creativity, with Silicon Valley as its or- igin and fortress. The SIA Roadmap is still push- ing the size of wafer transistors smaller and small- er, with the resulting faster rise times and need for finer pitch. But silicon needs a mounting plat- form and the printed circuit and organic IC pack- age will be needed to create working products. For North America, there is a growing need for more HDI capability. Some of the reasons for the slower adoption of HDI fabrication in N.A. may rest with four obstacles: Defining density needs; EDA tools not providing in - creased functionality; process controls for fab- ricating reliable microvias; and bare-board/ICT solutions once HDI is assembled. A wakeup call may be too strong a term, but it is time to seriously consider what you are going to do about HDI. The adage "offshore can't handle our technology" is out of date. Offshore (or Asia) can now do 24-layer multilayers, laser-drilled HDIs, fine lines (2-mil traces and spaces), flip chip packages, pure gold, hard gold, low loss materials, RF, buried capacitance, mixed dielectrics, etc. The current production analysis of HDI technology released by TechSearch International in "High- Density Microvia Substrates: Markets, Applica- tions and Infrastructure−Updated" shows that Asia had 86% of the HDI business in 2016−2017 [1] . As you can see in Figure 1, North America is a mere 5% of the total. TechSearch predicts that HDI will grow to $18.6 billion by 2020. Now you might ask, why is this so? The two main uses for HDI are for portable products like FEATURE Figure 1: HDI production worldwide for 2016−2017.

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