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MAY 2020 I PCB007 MAGAZINE 85 PCB by ionizing a precursor gas in a low-pres- sure plasma. Because the coating is deposited uniformly wherever the process gas contacts the sub- strate, the process can deposit a completely continuous film at coating thicknesses as low as 15 nm, including inside high aspect ratio vias. In the plasma polymerization process, a mixture of gases (precursor gas) is introduced in the vacuum chamber containing the PCBs. A microwave/RF generator sparks the plas- ma which ionizes and fragments the gas mol- ecules in a glow discharge. These active mo- lecular fragments recombine on the surface of the circuit board to create a thin film with good adhesion to the substrate. This resultant fluoropolymer has remarkable chemical prop- erties, which extend the shelf life of the PCB. The surface is solderable. Conclusion Gas plasma is a well-established and reliable technology, which has been used for decades. The plasma process is an environmentally friendly, efficient, and reproducible cleaning method. Plasma treatment is a green technol- ogy. There is no waste or wastewater. There are small amounts of gases that can be easily released into the atmosphere. The gases used can be environmentally relevant, even in the manufacturing process of these gases. PCB007 References 1. Diener Electronic Plasma Surface Technology, Plas- matechnik, 2 Auflage 2008. 2. Wikipedia: Plasma, Irving Langmuir. 3. March Plasma Systems, plasma applications in the printed circuit industry. 4. Arlon CLTE microwave materials, fabrication guidelines. 5. Rogers Corporation, fabrication guidelines for RO 3000 series high-frequency materials. Nikolaus Schubkegel retired in February 2019. For the past 12 years, Schubkegel worked at Umicore Galvanotechnik GmbH in Germany as a technical service engineer for Taiyo products. Before that, he worked as a process engineer in the solder mask department at the former IBM-PCB plant (later STP) in Albstadt, Germany. Schubkegel obtained an M.Sc. degree in chemical engineering from the Polytechnic Institute in Timisoara. NASA has slated Michigan Technological University's second student-built satellite for a March 2021 deployment from the International Space Station (ISS). Stratus, named for its cloud-imaging mission, will be carried to the space station, 200 miles above Earth, in a SpaceX Dragon cargo capsule on a Falcon 9 rocket. The Dragon will dock to the ISS. Once successfully deployed, Stratus will be the University's second orbiting nanosatellite. (Source: MTU) MTU's Next Student-built Satellite Set to Launch in 2021 It's not hard to see how CubeSats get their name. Stratus is a 3U spacecraft, which means it's composed of three units. This photo was taken in fall 2019. Michigan Tech's Aerospace Enterprise empowers undergraduate students to design, build, and fly spacecraft.

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