Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Improved Fabrication of High Resolution Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs)

11.12.2002


Through precise control of the etching process, an inventor in Oxford University’s Photofabrication Unit has made the reliable production of High Resolution Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs) with conductors down to 10 µm wide more of a cost-effective reality.

With increasing demands for greater miniaturisation and the use of flexible circuitry, the need for improved fabrication methods for high resolution printed circuit boards is becoming more important. PCBs currently include conductors with a width of 150 µm, but industry now requires conductors to be as narrow as 25 µm, and even as narrow as 10 µm. With current manufacturing techniques it is not possible to attain the required precision, especially where the spacing between the conductors varies. The etching rate is highest where the conductors are furthest apart, leading to over-etching and subsequent under-cutting of the very fine conductors in these areas. The resultant PCB has copper conductors of variable width, and therefore its performance is not optimum.

By controlling the etch conditions and the area to be etched, the Oxford inventor has reduced the amount of over-etching to an acceptable level, and under-cutting has been virtually eliminated. The spaces between the conductors are now all of uniform width, but with more redundant copper remaining on the PCB, resulting in the etching being confined to narrow tracks. In the magnified view of an actual PCB, the white areas represent the exposed copper tracks, while the black areas show the intervening non-conducting substrate.



This exciting new technology will benefit many of the applications that now demand PCBs with fine conductors or alternatively require flexible circuitry to facilitate yet further miniaturisation, including mobile phones, personal flip-top organisers and inkjet printers.

Isis Innovation, Oxford University’s technology transfer company, has filed a patent application for this technology and welcomes contact from companies interested in commercially developing this technique.

Jennifer Johnson | alfa

More articles from Process Engineering:

nachricht Copper oxide photocathodes: laser experiment reveals location of efficiency loss
10.05.2019 | Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie

nachricht NIST research sparks new insights on laser welding
02.05.2019 | National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

All articles from Process Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The working of a molecular string phone

Researchers from the Department of Atomically Resolved Dynamics of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg, the University of Potsdam (both in Germany) and the University of Toronto (Canada) have pieced together a detailed time-lapse movie revealing all the major steps during the catalytic cycle of an enzyme. Surprisingly, the communication between the protein units is accomplished via a water-network akin to a string telephone. This communication is aligned with a ‘breathing’ motion, that is the expansion and contraction of the protein.

This time-lapse sequence of structures reveals dynamic motions as a fundamental element in the molecular foundations of biology.

Im Focus: Milestones on the Way to the Nuclear Clock

Two research teams have succeeded simultaneously in measuring the long-sought Thorium nuclear transition, which enables extremely precise nuclear clocks. TU Wien (Vienna) is part of both teams.

If you want to build the most accurate clock in the world, you need something that "ticks" very fast and extremely precise. In an atomic clock, electrons are...

Im Focus: Graphene sets the stage for the next generation of THz astronomy detectors

Researchers from Chalmers University of Technology have demonstrated a detector made from graphene that could revolutionize the sensors used in next-generation space telescopes. The findings were recently published in the scientific journal Nature Astronomy.

Beyond superconductors, there are few materials that can fulfill the requirements needed for making ultra-sensitive and fast terahertz (THz) detectors for...

Im Focus: Physicists from Stuttgart prove the existence of a supersolid state of matte

A supersolid is a state of matter that can be described in simplified terms as being solid and liquid at the same time. In recent years, extensive efforts have been devoted to the detection of this exotic quantum matter. A research team led by Tilman Pfau and Tim Langen at the 5th Institute of Physics of the University of Stuttgart has succeeded in proving experimentally that the long-sought supersolid state of matter exists. The researchers report their results in Nature magazine.

In our everyday lives, we are familiar with matter existing in three different states: solid, liquid, or gas. However, if matter is cooled down to extremely...

Im Focus: World record for tandem perovskite-CIGS solar cell

A team headed by Prof. Steve Albrecht from the HZB will present a new world-record tandem solar cell at EU PVSEC, the world's largest international photovoltaic and solar energy conference and exhibition, in Marseille, France on September 11, 2019. This tandem solar cell combines the semiconducting materials perovskite and CIGS and achieves a certified efficiency of 23.26 per cent. One reason for this success lies in the cell’s intermediate layer of organic molecules: they self-organise to cover even rough semiconductor surfaces. Two patents have been filed for these layers.

Perovskite-based solar cells have experienced an incredibly rapid increase in efficiency over the last ten years. The combination of perovskites with classical...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Society 5.0: putting humans at the heart of digitalisation

10.09.2019 | Event News

Interspeech 2019 conference: Alexa and Siri in Graz

04.09.2019 | Event News

AI for Laser Technology Conference: optimizing the use of lasers with artificial intelligence

29.08.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Low sea-ice cover in the Arctic

13.09.2019 | Earth Sciences

Researchers produce synthetic Hall Effect to achieve one-way radio transmission

13.09.2019 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Penn engineers' new topological insulator reroutes photonic 'traffic' on the fly

13.09.2019 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>