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10 PCB007 MAGAZINE I FEBRUARY 2022 Feature Interview by the I-Connect007 Editorial Team Additive and semi-additive processes are getting a lot of attention lately, especially from OEMs who find that traditional subtractive etch manufacturing won't cut it for their cut- ting-edge applications. But what does a fabri- cator need to know to move into additive and semi-additive? When does it make sense for the OEM? We asked Averatek's Mike Vinson and Tara Dunn to add up the facts behind the hype for us. Andy Shaughnessy: Where is additive and semi- additive right now? Is it something that's going to have to happen? Mike Vinson: It depends on the application and semi-additive is shown to have the advantage of being able to replicate the subtractive pro- cesses in terms of fitness and conductivity. With fully additive, we don't oen see those same conductivity numbers, but much of it's going to be application dependent. We're see- ing a lot of interest in additive and semi-addi- tive with standard circuit boards, as well as some 3D type circuitry that is beginning to get a lot of traction right now. Shaughnessy: ere's some debate going on. Will shops need to offer some form of additive to be competitive, or will it never displace the traditional subtractive process? Tara Dunn: It certainly won't displace subtrac- tive edge technology. As we all know, there's still a significant portion of the industry that's doing two-, four- and six-layer circuit boards with very large feature sizes. Additive pro- cesses are for the area of the market that is pushing the limits of what HDI technology can handle with subtractive etch, whether that be for line width, space, trying to break through that 75-micron barrier to go to 50 micron or below. Now we are reliant on multiple levels of stacked microvias and the ability to route in few layers will reduce that dependence. We all Summing Up the Facts in Additive and Semi-Additive Processes

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