The Changing Shape of the HDI Market


Reading time ( words)

Evolution of the HDI PCB

Since their advent in the early-to-mid-1990s, high-density interconnect (HDI) PCBs have undergone several changes and could now be said to be entering their third evolution. Based on subtractive, or print-and-etch processes, the early HDI panels made use of traditional cores and sequential lamination steps to produce high-end boards with ~60 mm line and space (L/S) capabilities. But most importantly, they relied on microvias to enable their high interconnect density, which, at that time, could not be readily achieved with other technologies.

As board producers improved their processes, HDI board capability also improved; with the release of what we now accept as the smartphone, in the early 2000s, the second generation of HDI panels came into being. While the laser microvias remained, stacked vias began to replace staggered vias, and in combination with the “any layer” or “every layer” build-up technique, these new HDI boards eventually begin to exhibit 40 mm L/S.

Still based on subtractive technologies, this any-layer approach remains the king of the HDI techniques, and it is true to say that the majority of the advanced HDI PCBs that are typical to mobile devices are still produced with this technique. However, in 2017, the HDI market began its next evolution by starting to move away from subtractive processes and into those based on pattern plating. While still reasonably common in Europe and the USA, in Asia HDI has been generally limited to IC substrate manufacturers.

Semi-additive processing (SAP) uses pattern plating processes to realize features

To read the full version of this article which originally appeared in the September 2018 issue of PCB007 Magazine, click here.

Share

Print


Suggested Items

EIPC Winter Conference, Day 1

03/19/2019 | Alun Morgan, EIPC
EIPC Chairman Alun Morgan writes about the highlights of and the technical discussions at the recent EIPC Winter Conference held in Milan last February 14–15.

Laser Focus on Flex and Rigid-flex

01/28/2019 | Barry Matties, I-Connect007
ESI’s Chris Ryder, director of Product Management, and Shane Noel, Flex Systems product manager, discuss laser vias for flex users and the increasing necessity for companies to collaborate early on and become more and more involved, whether that be in the product design, or with the process or base material manufacturers.

Robert Art on the Importance of Thermal Management

01/07/2019 | Pete Starkey, I-Connect007
Robert Art, global account manager for IMS materials at Ventec International Group, discusses future market requirements for thermal management materials, the need for a better understanding of the concept of thermal impedance, and an initiative to propose a consistent industry-standard method for measuring thermal conductivity while at electronica 2018.



Copyright © 2019 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.