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40 PCB007 MAGAZINE I SEPTEMBER 2022 Recently, columnist Dana Korf has been working with Taiwan Union Technology Cor- poration (TUC), one of the largest provid- ers of copper-clad laminate and mass lamina- tion services in the world. We spoke with Dana about the trends he sees in materials at TUC and around the globe, why copper is still king, as well as some potential non-traditional mate- rials that may see growth soon. Dana invited John Strubbe, TUC VP of technology, to join in the conversation. Nolan Johnson: Dana, what's new in the materi- als world? What are you seeing? Dana Korf: If you look at straight FR-4, there's not much going on. ere are more high-volt- age requirements in the automotive, so there's a little bit of tweaking of FR-4 to handle volt- ages around 1,500 or 2,000 volts. Of course, they want long-term reliability, but that's a rel- atively minor technical requirement to obtain. With HDI, it's just a matter of working with thinner glass fabric with the traditional HDI resins, because layers are getting thinner and the number of required lamination cycles increases every year, but that's more of an adjustment of material properties. Chip packaging is becoming a constraint. Many companies, like TUC, are now offering chip level packaging materials because there's just more demand for it than the market can handle. at has a fairly long approval process, just like automotive. John Strubbe: Most of my work is in low-loss materials for digital. Trying to, as I oen say, "get down to free space, no loss," for the same price as FR-4. ere's a lot of work in cop- per foil and resins, and a lot of analysis on the glass fabrics. ey're starting to look at quartz again and polymeric materials. ey're try- ing to get down to really low losses for digital, but the designers are running into the problem Korf and Strubbe: Material Witnesses Interview by the I-Connect007 Editorial Team

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