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8 PCB007 MAGAZINE I SEPTEMBER 2023 Nolan's Notes by Nolan Johnson, I-CONNECT007 Convergence When I stop to consider the dynamics in our industry at this moment, I keep coming back to the idea of "convergence." Aspects of our industry historically thought of as distinct and separate are blurring the lines and over- lapping. As I look back on our coverage in the past five years, I see convergence taking place, moving like a glacier—slow and steady but with formidable force. In this issue of PCB007 Magazine, the three areas of convergence we consider are materials, advanced packaging, and UHDI. First, a look at materials. At the outset, materials seem to be fracturing every which way. Virtually all manufacturers of materials have added to their lineup. ere are special products optimizing high-speed, low-loss, temperature extremes, and the list goes on. Performance specification, pricing, and avail- ability are all factors in selection, making the market seem fractured. But just as Newtonian physics works at the on-planet level of the uni- verse (but not so well in the cosmic scope), all those specialized materials lead to the ability to make the right product for the right envi- ronment. Advanced packaging will change the landscape of assembly and soldering. In the end, the choices allow us to be better at what we do. Now, what about advanced packaging? at's a semiconductor concern, isn't it? Yes, sort of. e convergence is with PCB-like sub- strates and interposers. Currently, almost all the advanced packaging fabrication capabili- ties are in Asia, so building out a globally resil- ient supply chain will require sufficient fab capability in Europe and the Americas. Who will make the investment? Some folks think that whatever goes inside the package

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