Selective metal deposition technology
Fabrication of circuit traces is the most challenging task in Moulded interconnect devices (MID) production, being both technically difficult to achieve and difficult to make cost effectively. Moulded interconnect devices (MID) – an injection-moulded thermoplastic part with integrated electronics – offers material, weight and cost savings by integrating electronic circuits directly into polymeric components.
The Selective Surface Activation Induced by Laser (SSAIL) is a new technology for writing electronic circuits directly onto the dielectric material by modifying surface properties with a laser has been developed at Center for physical sciences and technology. Lasers can write the circuits directly by modifying the surface of polymers followed by an electroless metal plating. SSAIL is a three-step process. the first is surface modification by laser; second is chemical activation of modified areas; and the last step is metal deposition by electroless plating. The new technology offers laser writing speeds of up to 4m/s, and therefore spatial plating pitch is kept narrow at 25µm. Moreover SSAIL is cost effective technology comparing with state of art currently used in industry – Laser Direct Structuring (LDS) and is capable metalize not only polymers but also a glass. Real demonstration has been fabricated in collaboration with Fiat research center.
Materials: polymers – polycarbonate (PC), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), polyamide (PA), poly vinyl chloride (PVC), polyphthalamide (PA).
Laser writing speed: 4 m/s.
Plating pitch (selectiveness): 25 µm.