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April 2021
Asia Electronics Industry logo
Asia Electronics Industry
April 2021 Volume 26, Serial No. 295

ASIA ELECTRONICS INDUSTRY (ISSN 1342-422X) is published monthly by Dempa Publications, Inc., 1-11-15 Higashi Gotanda, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo 141-8715, Japan Tel: +81-3-3445-6111 Fax: +81-3-3445-6890. Editorial e-mail: may@dempa.co.jp; Subscription e-mail: circulationmanila@dempa.co.jp.

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Cover | Story
W

ith more than one hundred years of history, measuring instruments and control systems manufacturer Yokogawa Electric Corporation now operates 114 companies in 62 countries and manages 18,000 employees. In its annual consolidated sales of ¥404 billion (US$3.7 billion), it generates 70 percent outside of Japan with businesses spanning Middle East, Africa, China, Americas, and countries in Europe, as well as in Southeast Asia and the Far East.

Yokogawa Test & Measurement Corporation is the core company of the Group’s measuring instruments business. Its main products include basic measuring instruments, such as power measuring instruments and oscilloscopes; optical measuring instruments, such as optical time domain reflectometers (OTDRs); and optical spectrum analyzers. It has annual sales of about ¥15.3 billion (US$140 million) and about 290 employees.

Yokogawa Test & Measurement positions itself as “a company that supports infrastructure,” and identifies power analyzers and high-speed data acquisition systems as its representative measuring instruments. They have been used widely for the measurement of power grids as social infrastructure in various countries.

AEI News
Foxconn’s Automobile Arm, NIDEC Ink Partnership
TAIWAN and JAPAN – Foxtron Inc. and NIDEC Corporation have agreed to develop power train systems for use in next-generation electric vehicles. The partnership will leverage on NIDEC’s vast experience in the manufacture and research of motors and electric power trains and of Foxtron’s vehicle design and development capabilities.

Foxtron was a product of a joint venture agreement between Foxconn and Yulon Motor Co., Ltd., a Taiwanese car maker.

The two companies will work on a long-term plan that involves passenger and commercial vehicle production, with results of the collaboration will be announced towards the fourth quarter of 2021. The agreement will also encompass NIDEC to contribute its expertise in the MIH Open Platform, specifically in the aspects motor technologies and control.

Initiated by Foxconn, the alliance aims to accelerate development of autonomous electric vehicle, which as of February already has over 200 member partners.
www.honhai.com/en-us/; www.nidec.com

In View | This Month
Makers of Electronic Materials Build up R&D Capacities

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etting sights on business expansion for the medium and long term, electronic materials manufacturers venture into the establishment of new research and development (R&D) centers and new research facilities. Innovations are directed towards improving technical development on prospective fields.

Today’s fast-paced society also speeds up materials development. Material companies try to heighten their competitiveness by improving fundamental technologies, developing new products and process. They particularly focus on growth fields, like next-generation communications, mobility, and semiconductor process, as well as sustainable and carbon neutral society.

Manufacturers also aim to cultivate new areas and create new values through collaboration with other companies by establishing space for co-creation with external partners, such as customers, academia, and startups, in their R&D facilities.

Kioxia, Western Digital Release 6Gen 3D Flash Memory
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ioxia Corporation and Western Digital Corp. have developed a sixth-generation, 162-layer 3D flash memory technology. This marks the next milestone in the companies’ 20-year joint venture, and the highest density and most advanced 3D flash memory technology to date.

New Architecture Leverages New Innovations
This 6Gen 3D flash memory features advanced architecture beyond conventional eight-stagger memory hole array and achieves up to 10 percent greater lateral cell array density compared to the fifth-generation technology. This lateral scaling advancement, in combination with 162 layers of stacked vertical memory, enables 40 percent reduction in die size compared to the 112-layer stacking technology, optimizing cost.

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Japanese Mounters Poise as China Gets Back on Feet
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he Chinese manufacturing industry has started to regain its agility. At the recent National People’s Congress (NPC), China positioned 2021, which marks 100th year founding of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), as a significant year to achieve gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of 6 percent through domestic demand expansion. In its five-year plan from 2021, it will increase research and development expenses by over 7 percent yearly, and lists seven fields as focus areas: artificial intelligence (AI), semiconductors, quantum information, brain science, genetic research and bio technology, clinical medicine and healthcare, and deep space, deep earth, and deep sea.

Thorough Containment of COVID-19
China successfully suppressed COVID-19 through widespread testing, complete isolation of people who are tested positive, heightened contact tracing of infected people using smartphone apps, tightened lockdown on areas with high infection rates, and two-week quarantine of people entering the country. To date, China continues to impose these measures.

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Rexxam
Rexxam Improves Quality of Solder Inspection
Sherlock-SP-700 solder paste inspection system
Photo 1: Sherlock-SP-700 solder paste inspection system
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or this year, Rexxam Co., Ltd. is set to release Sherlock-SP-700 solder paste inspection system, Pegasus-600I and Pegasus-300F substrate coating systems, as well as the Sherlock Series automated optical inspection (AOI) system, and Watson QR-800 laser marking system.

Sherlock-SP-700 Solder Paste Inspection System
The Sherlock-SP-700 solder paste inspection system (Photo 1) inspects solder area, height, volume and position through height measurement with a resolution of 7μm (Photo 2).

By reading Gerber data and automatically setting inspection threshold, it can create inspection data in a short time.

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or this year, Rexxam Co., Ltd. is set to release Sherlock-SP-700 solder paste inspection system, Pegasus-600I and Pegasus-300F substrate coating systems, as well as the Sherlock Series automated optical inspection (AOI) system, and Watson QR-800 laser marking system.

Sherlock-SP-700 solder paste inspection system
Photo 1: Sherlock-SP-700 solder paste inspection system
Sherlock-SP-700 Solder Paste Inspection System
The Sherlock-SP-700 solder paste inspection system (Photo 1) inspects solder area, height, volume and position through height measurement with a resolution of 7μm (Photo 2).

By reading Gerber data and automatically setting inspection threshold, it can create inspection data in a short time.

LG Display’s DXD Benefits from High Resolution IGZO TFT
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n a groundbreaking development, LG Display has announced a large-size oxide thin-film transistors (TFTs) for digital X-ray detectors (DXD), paving the way for the consumer and mobile display panel maker to enter into more lucrative and high-premium medical diagnosis and image equipment market for the likes of X-ray.

DXD is the digital equivalent of an analog X-ray system. It digitally shoots and creates digital image files for diagnosis, unlike the analog system that uses the traditional X-ray films.

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Japan Unix
Japan Unix Soldering Robot & Automation Technology
ULD-02 Laser Soldering
ULD-02 Laser Soldering
The new product laser soldering unit ULD-02 has enhanced the control and optimization of the soldering process compared to conventional product. By adopting a unique temperature control method and by combining a radiation thermometer and laser output, it can simultaneously monitor and control the laser output and temperature during soldering. The temperature during soldering is visualized and can be saved as log data, which can later be used as soldering process management data. In addition, the personal computer software Soldering Manager enables editing laser output conditions, acquiring log data during soldering, and saving video during soldering. It has realized the visualization of the soldering process.
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JUKI
JUKI Smart Solutions
Transformation and Business Growth Through Automation
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UKI Corporation will offer at NEPCON China 2021 four solutions that will accelerate innovation at customers’ facilities and growth of their businesses through JUKI’s automation solutions. These solutions will evolve around the theme “JUKI Smart Solutions – Factory Transformation and Business Growth Through Automation”.

High-Speed, High-Quality Line Solution
Machines
High-speed, high-quality line solution
The diversification of printed circuit boards has been accelerating to accommodate fifth-generation (5G) communications-related devices, wearable devices, and light-emitting diode (LED) displays, and the mounting process is now shifting from variable-volume, variable-mix production to high-mix, low-volume production. JUKI proposes the latest line solutions targeting the mounting process.
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Tokyo Weld
AI Function Brings Visual Inspection Closer to Human Capability
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he aggressive capital investment that had continued since 2015 was expected to settle down in 2020 and was presumed for another rebound sometime in the future. However, the market trend changed significantly in the first half of 2020 due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). In fact, the outlook was pessimistic from April until June. Barely six months after, the demand for mobile PCs and tablet terminals showed some signs of rebound, triggered by the recovery of production at factories and by adapting to the new normal. At present, the outlook for the electronic component industry is bright rather than gloomy. Although the future is still unstable, expectations remain high because the industry has to respond to technological development and growing demand for smartphones supporting 5G. Under such circumstances and with electronic components continuing the miniaturization trend, needs for inspection to guarantee high quality and high reliability are becoming more prominent.

Tokyo Weld Co. Ltd. has widely deployed taping machines, measurement inspection machines, visual inspection machines, and terminal coating machines for electronic components. In recent years, the company devoted enormous efforts to develop capacitors, resistors, inductors, and other types with 0201 (mm) size to catch up with the miniaturization trend. The visual inspection machine business also expanded in full swing for about five years. The company is actively working to respond to the demand for higher reliability and higher quality required by in-vehicle applications, for example.

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FUJI
Smarter Factories with Digital Twin Promote Zero Gaps
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ollowing the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, many industries are beginning to get up on their feet again. For the manufacturing industry, various ways are being adopted to operate within the COVID-19 restrictions. This could mean abiding social distancing rules or operating with as few staff as possible.

With this as a backdrop, a high level of interest is anticipated in the automation of customer sites.

With FUJI Smart Factory, it is possible to attain “digital twin” through automation and digitization to enable production without difference (zero gaps) between the “virtual” and the “real” (Fig. 1).

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FUJI
NXTR Electronic Component Mounter
  • Zero placement defects
    Stable, high-quality placement can be maintained using newly-developed sensing technology to monitor the status of the machine in real time and control the stress on parts and panels at the same time.
  • Zero machine operators
    The newly-developed Smart Loader completely automates part supply and changeover for next production according to the production schedule. This prevents short stops from part supply errors and similar issues that are caused by delays and mistakes during supply work.
  • Zero machine stops
    NXTR continues the complete modularity concept employed by the NXT. Heads and other units can be exchanged without tools, making it possible to perform maintenance offline. Predictive maintenance is made possible through self-diagnosis, preventing sudden machine stops from affecting the production plan.
NXTR Electronic Component Mounter
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Yamaha Motor
Yamaha Solution Realizes Wide-Ranging Smart Manufacturing
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urface-mount technology (SMT) supports the pursuit for customers’ safety and personal satisfaction with the continuing evolution of electronics.

By optimizing its cutting-edge robotics technology, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. has developed a full line up of SMT equipment. As its own contribution to the future of electronics, it came up with the “1 STOP SMART SOLUTION” concept.

Solution Concept
To realize the 1 STOP SMART SOLUTION, two conditions must be satisfied: (i) the company has the know-how to collectively develop and manufacture all the main equipment of the SMT production line and (ii) each of these machines must meet high-performance standards.

Using its own smart solution concept, Yamaha has developed and commercialized all major equipment with intelligent functions on the SMT production line. They consist of SMD storage systems, solder printers, dispensers, SPIs, mounters, automated optical inspection (AOI), among others. Furthermore, it has succeeded in giving the highest level of performance in the industry to all of the individual machines. As a result, it has completed one of the industry’s best full lineup system using only the Yamaha brand (Figure 1).

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Yamaha Motor
Features of Yamaha’s 1 STOP SMART SOLUTION
YST15 Intelligent SMD storage system
YST15 is an automated warehouse system for SMD components that can handle up to 1,500 reel components with a single unit (up to 2,000 on an optional basis) and can load and unload up to 33 reels in one batch. ID is automatically read at the time of entering for the purpose of preventing human error. It also supports tray components and is equipped with a humidity control function as standard equipment. Furthermore, up to 99 units can be centrally controlled. In addition, by linking with the IoT/M2M integrated system “Intelligent Factory”, spare components can be shipped out at the optimum timing. As a result, the work load and restraint time of the operator are greatly reduced, preventing production interruption due to delay in components supply.
YST15 Intelligent SMD storage system
TECH | FOCUS
Hybrid Capacitors Expand Application Markets
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he progress of car electronics technology and the rise of electric vehicle (EV) and hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) in recent years have increased the number of electronic control units (ECUs) in vehicles. Accordingly, the demand for electronic components installed in automobiles has also risen with more electronic circuits installed in the vehicle interior. However, the engine room now serves as the installation space to keep a sufficient habitable space in the vehicle. Because the engine room is likely to be exposed to a high temperature environment than the vehicle interior, the capacitors mounted on the ECU are required to have more resistance to high temperature and longer life. To guarantee power savings and high performance of the ECU, the parts are required to support high ripple current, high withstand voltage, miniaturization, high capacity, vibration resistance, among others.

The environment in which aluminum electrolytic capacitors are used has become increasingly severe. Therefore, conducting polymer hybrid aluminum electrolytic capacitors (hybrid capacitors) have been developed to meet such demands and their use has widely started. A hybrid capacitor has the same appearance and shape as the current aluminum electrolytic capacitor and has achieved high temperature resistance, long life, high ripple current, and low electrostatic resistance (ESR). Aside from use in automotive field, hybrid capacitors are now widely used in home appliances, medical equipment, communication infrastructure (5G-related), general power supply, and others. It is rapidly replacing aluminum electrolytic capacitors in various applications.

TECH | FOCUS
Solution with Multi-Channel Simultaneous Measuring Instruments
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n recent years, toward achieving a sustainable society, further power saving and higher efficiency are required for motors and inverters of electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHVs), as well as for clean energy-related products, such as photovoltaic power generation systems. Aside from the improvements of hardware, such as devices and actuators, further increase in efficiency and power saving advance through the combination of microprocessors represented by electronic control units (ECUs) with software control.

This article introduces solutions that improve the efficiency of measuring work during development evaluation of inverters and motors that are important elements of EVs and PHVs, and their peripheral devices through simultaneous measurement of multiple channels.

Special | Report
Smart Society & Infrastructure typography
Business Potentials Expand as Road to Smart City Widens
More tech companies are penetrating the smart city field taking advantage of cutting-edge technologies that will play pivotal role in the creation of smart infrastructures, which are expected to yield far ranging business opportunities.
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dvanced technologies such as internet of things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) play critical roles to improve the efficiency of infrastructures, which will be pivotal in smart cities. NTT DATA Corporation has initiated a new brand to complement the expected business opportunities as more cities evolve into smart cities.

NTT DATA has been engaging in various businesses ranging from real estate to automobile manufacturing with competition in creating related markets likely to intensify. NTT DATA’s vision for a smart city entails the use of smartphones in almost all transactions and procedures, environment-friendly city wherein energy is used efficiently, and autonomous-driven cars ply the streets safely. NTT DATA said it has been aggressively acting to contribute to the realization of a smart city.

KEL Releases New Variations of Crimping Connectors
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EL Corporation expands the product variation of the FTC Series 5.08mm-pitch connectors capable of crimping two cables. Its capability to crimp two cables contributes to the reduction of the number of pins. The company promotes sales expansion of the FTC Series to a wide range of markets.

KEL will release the straight type (plug side) in addition to the right-angle type. The company will add a variation with a gold plating thickness of 0.1μm to the substrate-side connector and the crimping contact. The existing product has a gold plating thickness of 0.38μm. The company has also added a variation with 10 pins to the cable-side connector with a lock (FTC02), right-angle-type substrate-side connector (FTC11), and cable relay type (FTC12).

The most salient feature of the FTC Series is its capability to crimp two cables to a single contact. Crimping two cables to a single terminal reduces the number of pins of the connector and significantly contributes to size reduction. Because it facilitates power transfer between connectors, the part that transfers the power through a board can be converted to a much simpler boardless structure. In particular, in the case when a terminal block is used to branch the power, the use of the FTC Series eliminates the necessity of the terminal block, contributing to the reduction of components cost. The reduction in the number of printed boards used in equipment is also expected.

Special | Report
Article tab
Power Electronics Capture Fast Signals with Latest Tools
Iwatsu Electric’s curve tracers highlight measurement of up to 2,000A as well as power electronics characteristics at the wafer base on front end of the semiconductor process. It also offers digital oscilloscopes as well as high voltage probes and current probes for power electronics.
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ower electronics have been gaining a lot of attention, mainly due to demand for efficient power conversion in various electronic devices applications. As power electronics advance, manufacturers draw their attention to power semiconductors, such as silicon carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN) devices as they can provide higher efficiency and higher density. For power electronics to capture fast signals, measuring instruments with high frequency bands and fast sampling rates are required.

Iwatsu Electric Co., Ltd. handles semiconductor curve tracers that evaluate characteristics of power semiconductions, such as metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistors (MOSFETs) and insulated gate bipolar transistors (IGBTs) that use SiC and GaN as materials.

Special | Report
Article tab
Test Tools Pursue Co-Existence of Power Value, Waveform Data
Yokogawa Test & Measurement puts particular emphasis on the simultaneity of the power value and waveform data to enable detailed analysis of control, for example, of transient phenomenon.
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okogawa Test & Measurement Corporation’s lineup of measuring instruments for power electronics centers around wattmeters, waveform measuring instruments, and high voltage probes.

Multiple Channels Measurement
The company released in 2020 the DLM5000 oscilloscope with up to eight channels. It is equipped with a new function to connect two units using a cable, thus enabling synchronous measurement of up to 16 channels.

In the mechatronics field, some users possess two units in order to capture all signals in the final test, although they usually use four-channel models, notes Yokogawa Test & Measurement.

MOBILITY
Collaboration Brings Smart Display Controllers to New Heights
Socionext will bring to the market the fourth generation of smart display controllers that will pave way to new applications such as large multi-display applications on vehicle dashboard.
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ocionext Inc. has licensed Automotive Pixel Link 3 (APIX3) Series technology of Inova Semiconductors for its next generation of smart display controllers. This opens another chapter in a long-standing success story that began in 2007. Socionext was the first manufacturer to license the APIX interface for its smart display controller and several other products and subsequently was also the first licensee of APIX2 and APIX3.

To Bring More Functions
Socionext has continuously expanded its portfolio of display controllers and system-on-chips (SoCs) with APIX interfaces over the years, thereby covering the need for ever more networked and more sophisticated display architectures in vehicles. The fourth generation of smart display controllers has already been developed with the designation SC172x. The first samples will be available by Q2 2022. For the first time, the extended features of the fourth generation also include a repeater function where several graphic controllers can be cascaded. This enables new architectures such as panoramic displays in the dashboard where there is a clear trend towards ever larger or multi-display applications. Moreover, new functionalities such as Local Dimming and Warping-on-the-fly will be implemented to support more demanding requirements and to achieve system integration.
MOBILITY
Deep Learning-Integrated SoC Meets NCAP-Grade Standard
The updated R-Car V3H system-on-chip of Renesas Electronics is fitted with sophisticated features and offers best-in-class performance and propels automated driving.
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enesas Electronics Corporation has updated its state-of the-art R-Car V3H system-on-chip (SoC) to deliver significantly improved deep learning performance for smart camera applications, including driver and occupant monitoring systems (DMS/OMS), automotive front cameras, surround view, and auto parking for high-volume vehicles up to Level 2+. The updated SoC combines sensor fusion on the real-time domain meeting up to ASIL C standard metrics and an architecture optimized for smart computer vision.

It offers OEMs and Tier 1s a high-performance, low-power solution that supports the latest New Car Assessment Programme (NCAP) 2020 requirements as well as the roadmap to NCAP 2025 3 Stars at competitive system costs.

MOBILITY
Composite Autonomous Vehicle Platform Yields Zero Emissions
The partnership of Teijin and Applied EV offers new solutions for automotive applications based on advanced materials and structural design required in next-generation electric vehicles.
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eijin Limited and its joint development partner Applied Electric Vehicles (Applied EV) have achieved a major milestone toward their shared vision for zero-emission future mobility.

By utilizing Teijin’s lightweight, highly efficient material technology and expertise in composites manufacturing, Teijin and Applied EV have delivered a production-ready one-piece structural shell for Applied EV’s Blanc Robot, the zero-emission robotic vehicle platform. The shell is a key component and enables Applied EV to significantly reduce the weight and manufacturing complexity of the vehicle, enabling AEV to achieve low mass, high-energy efficiency, and excellent structural performance.

MOBILITY
Companies to Test Sensing System-Integrated Tires
The partner companies that have started research and development of internet of things (IoT)-capable tires aim to enable tire business with added value in the automobile mobility space.
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lps Alpine Co., Ltd., The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd., and ZENRIN Co., Ltd. have already conducted tests on potential tire business through joint demonstration testing of tires fitted with road surface sensing system and will be capable of merging of obtained data with map information.

The demonstration testing will involve sensing of road surfaces using test vehicles fitted with advanced tire sensors that are being jointly developed by Alps Alpine and Yokohama Rubber. Road surface data from tire sensors will be merged with the various kinds of map information held by ZENRIN. The aim is to accelerate analysis and accumulation of diverse road surface data, as well as system development, to enable new value-generating tire business.

Component | Materials

Harima Develops Scratch-Protection Transfer Release Film

Designed for semiconductor manufacturing, the new film adheres to the sealing resin and provides efficient protection to the package surface when applied with heat and pressure.
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arima Chemicals Group, Inc. has developed a new scratch-protection film (Fig. 1) to be used mainly for the manufacturing process of semiconductors.

A diagram showing the construction of a newly-developed film by Harima
Fig. 1: Structure of the newly developed film
When silicone resins are used as a sealant for semiconductor packages during compression molding, the package surface may get damaged. Harima’s newly developed transfer release film adheres to the sealing resins when the product is applied with heat and pressure. It also sticks to the resin while separating from the base film of the product, which provides efficient protection to the package surface. Moreover, the film can be used without making any changes to the compression mold machines or production processes.

Component | Materials

Sumitomo Chemical to Set up Production Base for PP Compounds in Poland
The new production base will allow the company to timely meet the demand for polypropylene compounds in Poland and its neighboring countries amid the market expansion of EV.
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o further enhance its polypropylene (PP) compound business, Sumitomo Chemical has put up a new production base in Poland Sumika Polymer Compounds Poland Sp.z.o.o. (SPCP), which will start commercial production in spring of 2022.

PP compounds are materials made by kneading PP with synthetic rubber, glass fibers, or inorganic fillers to improve its functionality and increase rigidity and other properties, for use in automobile bumpers, interiors and home appliances.

The Sumitomo Chemical Group has a competitive advantage in short glass fiber reinforced PP compounds (GFPP). GFPP is a high-performance material that combines the light weight and superior moldability of PP with the strength and heat tolerance of glass fibers. The Group has been expanding GFPP sales globally for use in automotive parts, such as battery casings, and home appliances, such as drum cover cases for washing machines.

Heightened Orders Create Buzz for FC-BGA Chip Packaging Substrate
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emand for flip chip ball grid array (FC-BGA) chip packaging substrates are exploding, as data center and cloud service providers are clamoring for more of server computers to expand their service infrastructure, fueling demand for CPUs and GPUs.

FC-BGA is a ground-breaking chip packaging technology designed to meld a chip on a substrate using ultra-tiny ball-type bumps. The hip packaging substrate is an ultra-thin PCB at the level of 01.mm in thickness, which are mainly used for semiconductor chip packaging.

Unlike FC chip scale package (FC-CSP) or System in Package (SiP) mainly used with mobile CPU and GPU package, FC BGA chip packaging technology is more suitable for large-system-bound CPUs and GPUs like those for PCs and servers.

PRODUCT | HIGHLIGHT
12G-SDI-Compatible Connector Improves Board Design, Workload
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o contribute to the further spread of 4K and 8K video transmission, Hirose Electric Co. Ltd. has developed connectors for 75Ω compact coaxial cables. The D.FL75 Series connectors are compatible with the 12G-SDI standard and adds to the improvement of the degree of freedom in board design for internal wiring and reduced design workload.

In recent years, broadcast cameras and monitors used in the production of video content for TVs and movies have been moving toward the higher definitions, such as 4K and 8K. As the transmission capacity increases, the speed of connectors used needs to amplify correspondingly. At present, the 12G-SDI standard, which enables transmission with a single 12Gbps-compatible coaxial cable, is the mainstream.

On the other hand, higher speed increases the difficulty of board design. Mounting of a BNC connector on a board requires workload for designing signal wiring on the board. In addition, the space for signal wiring should be secured on the board. The configuration of other electronic devices needs to consider this wiring of the board.

TECHNOLOGY | HIGHLIGHT
CMOS Transceiver at 300GHz Brings Wireless Communication Beyond 5G
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cientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology and NTT Corporation have developed a novel CMOS-based transceiver for wireless communications at 300GHz band, enabling future applications beyond fifth-generation (5G) communications standard. Their design addresses the challenges of operating CMOS technology at its practical limit and represents the first wideband CMOS phased-array system to operate at such elevated frequencies.

Communication at higher frequencies is a perpetually sought-after goal in electronics because of the greater data rates that would be possible and to take advantage of underutilized portions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Many applications beyond 5G, as well as the IEEE802.15.3d standard for wireless communications, call for transmitters and receivers capable of operating close to or above 300GHz.

Unfortunately, CMOS technology is not entirely suitable for such elevated frequencies. Near 300GHz, amplification becomes considerably difficult. Although a few CMOS-based transceivers for 300GHz have been proposed, they either lack enough output power, can only operate in direct line-of-sight conditions, or require a large circuit area to be implemented.

Business | Flash
Novel MEMS Sensor Brings Automated Driving to Reality
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urata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. has started mass production of a six-axis micro electromechanical systems (MEMS) inertial sensor, which contributes to higher precision of advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and automated driving.

The 6-axis MEMS inertial sensor is used to achieve an accurate travelling position by detecting the posture and direction of a vehicle. It is a key device for ADAS and automated driving of cars and buses. It is also used in automated guided vehicles (AGV) and tractors used in smart agriculture. Murata accelerates the expansion of the 3D MEMS business of the Functional Sales Division, one of seven divisions that have come under the direct control of the president through organizational changes in July last year.

Business | Strategy
TDK Expands Range to Keep up With Traditional, New Markets
F

or over a year now, the dreaded coronavirus disease (COVID-19) remains a threat not just on health of the people but also on the overall well-being of the global economy. Despite the onslaught of the pandemic, technological innovations continue across various fields and electronic components companies expect to see brighter prospects this year particularly coming from big-ticket industries that have been driving new growth opportunities.

In this interview with AEI, Toshihide Asanuma, President and Chief Executive Officer and China Headquarters General Manager, TDK China Co., Ltd., gives his take on how the technological innovations, despite the pandemic, are spurring better prospects especially coming from non-traditional industries.

Toshihide Asanuma, President and Chief Executive Officer and China Headquarters General Manager
Toshihide Asanuma, President and Chief Executive Officer and China Headquarters General Manager, TDK China Co., Ltd.,
zoomin
Remote Robot Operation System Taps Visual Sense of Force

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itsubishi Electric Corporation has been working on the research and development of a remote operation system that unites capabilities of both man and machine (robot). For example, in industrially advanced countries, labor shortages have been a problem. The development of a man-machine remote integration system would create a solution that delegates work using remote control technology from a sparsely populated to a densely populated region. The new technology adopts visual sense of force technology (visual haptics). Simple and intuitive operability using an operation interface that makes use of human’s cognitive ability is the major feature of the technology.

Adopts Visual Haptics
A man-machine remote integration system will become a core technology in various fields in the future. Various applications may include addressing labor shortages, maintenance of monitoring systems installed in remote locations, actions in response to frequently occurring natural disasters, telework, disinfection to prevent spread of viruses such as COVID-19, and disposal of unexploded bombs.

Product | News
Semiconductors & ICs
Mitsumi Electric’s MM3832 Series Protection IC
Three Mitsumi MM3832 ICs next to each other
Mitsumi Electric Co., Ltd. has commenced production of the newly developed MM3832 Series protection IC for one-cell lithium ion and lithium polymer rechargeable batteries. It detects overvoltage at high accuracy, while featuring a compact and low-profile package. Capable of high-accuracy detection of overvoltage, the protection IC allows the increase in the chargeable range. As the package is compact and has a low profile, it suits small products, such as wearable devices. Main applications include smartphones, tablets, wearable devices, including wireless earphones, and mobile devices.
Mitsumi Electric Co., Ltd.
https://www.mitsumi.co.jp
Omron Adopts Maxim’s I/O Hub Solutions to Enable Industry 4.0
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axim Integrated Products, Inc.’s dual IO-Link products have been adopted by OMRON Corporation for its NXR Series IO-Link Controller and IO-Link I/O hubs, expanding its IO-Link bi-directional controller and digital input-output capabilities.

The NXR Series gives OMRON customers a new way to add input-output to factory automation systems and bring intelligence to the edge of their manufacturing lines using Maxim Integrated’s MAX14819A dual IO-Link controller and MAX14827A IO-Link device, as well as MAX14912 and MAX14915 digital output devices. OMRON’s innovative NXR Series allows continuous diagnostics and monitoring of the health and status of manufacturing equipment at OMRON’s customers’ production sites.

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