Electroformed conductor patterns in electronics manufacturing

T. Laine-Ma (Corresponding Author), P. Ruuskanen, Satu Pasanen, Mikko Karttunen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: The aim of this study was to test and survey a circuitry transfer technique where conductor patterns are electroformed on carrier substrates and thereafter the electroformed patterns are transferred from carrier substrates to their final devices. Design/methodology/approach: An electrically conductive pattern is built up by an electrodepositing metal or metal alloy on a carrier substrate, called a mandrel, using a resist image to define the outlines of the pattern. Thereafter, the electroformed structures are bonded on plastic substrates, for instance, by hot pressing or by embedding into a resin. In our experiments, the imaging of stainless steel carriers was done by the photolithographic process and the electroformed copper patterns were transferred by hot pressing onto thermoplastic substrates. Findings: The literature review revealed that the transfer of electroformed conductor patterns to plastic parts is not a very commonly used technology, although it could provide possibilities for even quite specific structures in electronics manufacturing at an affordable price. Our tests indicated that the acidic peroxide-sulfuric pre-treatment of electroformed copper patterns before hot press bonding clearly improved the adhesion of copper on both acrylonitrile butadiene styrene and polyphenylene oxide substrates and that a steel template around the substrate during hot pressing process can restrict dimensional changes in thermoplastic substrates significantly. Originality/value: This paper contains a survey and preliminary testing of the electroformed circuitry transfer technique. The analysis of the test boards focused on the adhesion between copper strips and thermoplastic substrates and on the factors affecting adhesion. Finally, the paper introduces the advantages and drawbacks of the technique.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)150-159
Number of pages10
JournalCircuit World
Volume40
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fingerprint

Electronic equipment
Substrates
Hot pressing
Thermoplastics
Copper
Adhesion
Polyphenylene oxides
Plastic parts
Peroxides
Metals
Butadiene
Styrene
Stainless steel
Resins
Plastics
Imaging techniques
Steel
Testing
Experiments

Keywords

  • electronic circuits
  • conductor patterns
  • electroforming
  • thermoplastic substrates
  • hot pressing
  • adhesion
  • molded interconnect devices

Cite this

Laine-Ma, T. ; Ruuskanen, P. ; Pasanen, Satu ; Karttunen, Mikko. / Electroformed conductor patterns in electronics manufacturing. In: Circuit World. 2014 ; Vol. 40, No. 4. pp. 150-159.
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Electroformed conductor patterns in electronics manufacturing. / Laine-Ma, T. (Corresponding Author); Ruuskanen, P.; Pasanen, Satu; Karttunen, Mikko.

In: Circuit World, Vol. 40, No. 4, 2014, p. 150-159.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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AU - Laine-Ma, T.

AU - Ruuskanen, P.

AU - Pasanen, Satu

AU - Karttunen, Mikko

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N2 - Purpose: The aim of this study was to test and survey a circuitry transfer technique where conductor patterns are electroformed on carrier substrates and thereafter the electroformed patterns are transferred from carrier substrates to their final devices. Design/methodology/approach: An electrically conductive pattern is built up by an electrodepositing metal or metal alloy on a carrier substrate, called a mandrel, using a resist image to define the outlines of the pattern. Thereafter, the electroformed structures are bonded on plastic substrates, for instance, by hot pressing or by embedding into a resin. In our experiments, the imaging of stainless steel carriers was done by the photolithographic process and the electroformed copper patterns were transferred by hot pressing onto thermoplastic substrates. Findings: The literature review revealed that the transfer of electroformed conductor patterns to plastic parts is not a very commonly used technology, although it could provide possibilities for even quite specific structures in electronics manufacturing at an affordable price. Our tests indicated that the acidic peroxide-sulfuric pre-treatment of electroformed copper patterns before hot press bonding clearly improved the adhesion of copper on both acrylonitrile butadiene styrene and polyphenylene oxide substrates and that a steel template around the substrate during hot pressing process can restrict dimensional changes in thermoplastic substrates significantly. Originality/value: This paper contains a survey and preliminary testing of the electroformed circuitry transfer technique. The analysis of the test boards focused on the adhesion between copper strips and thermoplastic substrates and on the factors affecting adhesion. Finally, the paper introduces the advantages and drawbacks of the technique.

AB - Purpose: The aim of this study was to test and survey a circuitry transfer technique where conductor patterns are electroformed on carrier substrates and thereafter the electroformed patterns are transferred from carrier substrates to their final devices. Design/methodology/approach: An electrically conductive pattern is built up by an electrodepositing metal or metal alloy on a carrier substrate, called a mandrel, using a resist image to define the outlines of the pattern. Thereafter, the electroformed structures are bonded on plastic substrates, for instance, by hot pressing or by embedding into a resin. In our experiments, the imaging of stainless steel carriers was done by the photolithographic process and the electroformed copper patterns were transferred by hot pressing onto thermoplastic substrates. Findings: The literature review revealed that the transfer of electroformed conductor patterns to plastic parts is not a very commonly used technology, although it could provide possibilities for even quite specific structures in electronics manufacturing at an affordable price. Our tests indicated that the acidic peroxide-sulfuric pre-treatment of electroformed copper patterns before hot press bonding clearly improved the adhesion of copper on both acrylonitrile butadiene styrene and polyphenylene oxide substrates and that a steel template around the substrate during hot pressing process can restrict dimensional changes in thermoplastic substrates significantly. Originality/value: This paper contains a survey and preliminary testing of the electroformed circuitry transfer technique. The analysis of the test boards focused on the adhesion between copper strips and thermoplastic substrates and on the factors affecting adhesion. Finally, the paper introduces the advantages and drawbacks of the technique.

KW - electronic circuits

KW - conductor patterns

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KW - hot pressing

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