October 2019
Asia Electronics Industry
October 2019 Volume 24, Serial No. 277
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:;
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Cover | Story

okyo Weld Co., Ltd. has been making significant improvement in its product and technology development, by merging the development process to manufacturing process. As part of the efforts, the company has relocated its Numazu Technical Center in Miyamoto, Numazu-shi, Shizuoka Prefecture to the Numazu Plant, Ashitaka, Numazu-shi, Shizuoka Prefecture in Japan, where a new technical center was built. In the process, the company plans to integrate development to manufacturing, thus stepping up product and technology development.

Tokyo Weld has produced high-speed taping machines and testing and sorting machines for passive electronic components, represented by discrete semiconductors, such as diodes, transistors, and light-emitting diodes (LEDs), and LCR as mainstay products. The company has expanded its automated optical inspection (AOI) systems business, as a new pillar business following high-speed taping machines, and has already delivered many units.

Koji Takahashi, Marketing Director & Chief Technology Officer is joined by other personnel

Tokyo Weld relocated its Numazu Technical Center to the newly built technical center to enhance its product and technology development. At the site, Koji Takahashi, Marketing Director & Chief Technology Officer is joined by other personnel for AEI October cover.

From left: Yuna Goto, of Customer Service; Haruna Motosugi, of Engineering Division 1- Numazu Region; Satoshi Hiraota of Engineering Division 5 – Numazu Region; Tadatoshi Murakami of Engineering Division 2 – Numazu Region; Hiroyuki Mochizuki of Engineering Management, and Yuji Shiraki of Engineering Division 1 – Numazu Region, all from Tokyo Weld Co., Ltd.

AEI News
Qualcomm Flexes 5G Muscle, Buys Out TDK Share in JV
UNITED STATES – Qualcomm Incorporated has firmed its 5G strategy by completing its interest in RF360 Holdings Singapore Pte. Ltd., a joint venture with TDK Corporation. The joint venture has produced radio frequency front-end (RFFE) filters that enable Qualcomm Technologies to deliver complete 4G/5G RFFE solutions.

With this acquisition, Qualcomm Technologies is able to provide customers a complete end-to-end solution from modem to antenna, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 5G Modem-RF System, including the 5G New Radio (NR) sub-6 and millimeter wave (mmWave) solutions, integrating power amplifiers, filters, multiplexers, antenna tuning, switching and envelope tracking products.

Qualcomm said the acquisition is the final step to formally bring in-house more than 20 years of expertise in RFFE filtering. Qualcomm Technologies now has one of the broadest portfolios of RFFE products, including integrated and discrete micro-acoustic components utilizing RFFE filter technologies necessary for mobile phones and connected devices.

In View | This Month
Components, Materials Shore up for 5G Communications

n the run-up toward the full-scale implementation of the fifth-generation (5G) mobile communications system, technological development of electronic components and materials for 5G communication has been becoming active. Manufacturers aim to attain next-generation industry standards for their products by stepping up the development of electronic devices and materials that support base stations and terminals in order to achieve 5G high-speed and large-capacity communication.

5G is the next-generation communications system designed for the highly advanced information society in 2020 and beyond. 5G communication attracts attention as a technology that supports the expansion of internet of things (IoT) applications. It is expected to provide large capacity that is about 1,000 times that of the existing Long Term Evolution (LTE). With the spread of IoT and machine-to-machine (M2M) technologies in the coming years, more diverse services are expected to emerge out of 5G.

Special | Report
SEMICON Taiwan Special
New PCB Designs Emerge to Improve Characteristics

Different technologies arise in the PCB field to accommodate requirements, like heat dissipation, high current compatibility, finer circuits, and functional enhancement in the automobile and IoT-related markets.


ew printed circuit board (PCB) technologies are emerging primarily to serve growth fields, such as automobiles and internet of things (IoT)-related products.

Although recent demand for PCBs for smartphones and industrial equipment has been slow, the automobile market have been pushing up the demand for PCBs, reflecting the spread of electrified vehicles and functional enhancement toward the achievement of autonomous driving. Also, with the development of new terminals compatible with the fifth-generation (5G) mobile communications system and the integration of IoT, PCBs will spread to a wide range of industries, marking new growth.

Power circuits for automotive motor control-related components require high heat resistance, heat dissipation, and high-current-capable technologies. Recently, copper inlay PCBs have been attracting attention for this application. They partially improve heat discharging characteristics by pressing in a copper pin right beneath the heat-generating component. They achieve high heat dissipation by putting copper with high thermal conductivity into direct contact with the heat-generating component. A copper coin has a diameter of Φ3 to Φ6mm, and can be used for PCBs with a thickness of 1 to 2mm.

Special | Report
SEMICON Taiwan Special
Latest PCB Technologies Catch up on Industry Developments
Board technologies, such as MSAP, component-embedded PCB, hybrid PCB, thick copper PCB, and copper inlay PCB address the substrate requirements of today’s electronics-related industries.

n the back of advancements of printed circuit board (PCB) technologies are disruptive technologies from major industries. For one, moves toward autonomous driving of vehicles and electrified vehicles (xEVs) accelerate. Moreover, the full-scale adoption of fifth-generation (5G) mobile communications services is drawing near. These advancements require PCBs with sophisticated technologies. Technologies to achieve higher frequencies, faster speeds, high heat resistance and heat dissipation, thickness reduction, scaling down of components, vibration and shock resistance, and environmental resistance on these growth fields have been gathering steam.

Any-layer PCBs for smartphones adopt microfabrication technologies with line/space (L/S) ratio of 50μm/50μm and finer. Typical build-up multilayer PCBs adopt a method to build up insulation layers onto and beneath the core layer, which becomes the base. In the core layer, through holes are made using drills, and they are plated with copper. Blind via holes, which do not go through the entire board, are made in the upper and lower layers to secure conduction between layers.

In contrast, any-layer PCBs do not require the core layer in which through holes are made using drills, and small-diameter via holes created using a laser freely connect between layers.

Special | Report
SEMICON Taiwan Special
Electronic Materials Support 5G-Compatible PCBs
Among the materials being tapped are polyimide materials for low loss, copper foil with high transmission property, insulation material with low dielectric constant and low dielectric loss tangent and surface treatment process material for large-capacity communication.

ommercial services of fifth-generation (5G) communications, the next-generation high-speed mobile communications standard, have commenced in many countries. Anticipating the spread of 5G services on full scale, the establishment of communications infrastructure, including base stations, has begun, and 5G-compatible terminals are planned for release in the second half of this year. 5G provides communication speeds about 10 times those of existing Long Term Evolution (LTE), and greater data capacities.

In order to achieve ultrahigh speeds and large capacities, the improvement of printed circuit boards (PCBs) has been advancing. High speeds are achieved by suppressing transmission loss to a low level, and increasing the number of layers and density of multilayer PCBs enables transmission of large-capacity data. Various electronic materials are used in PCBs for the 5G era and are supporting technological innovation.

Special | Report
SEMICON Taiwan Special
Electronic Parts Makers Seize Potentials of IoT Market
In anticipation of the surge in network-based applications, development activities focus on LPWA-compliant modules, multifunctional sensors, and wireless sensor networks.

s the internet of things (IoT) market is expected to expand in the coming years, electronic components manufacturers have been stepping up the development of IoT-compliant electronic components and modules. The proliferation of IoT is expected to usher in a new network society wherein various things connect with one another, dramatically changing people’s lifestyle. Manufacturers of electronic components promote the cultivation of IoT-related businesses by proposing composite products that combine high-precision sensor, wireless communication device, and software technologies.

Among the wide range of application areas of IoT include improvement of productivity at factories, automotive driver assistance, disaster prevention of social infrastructure, security, efficient use of energy, sales assistance, medical, caregiving, healthcare, and agriculture. These applications target improvements of convenience and comfort, enhanced productivity, energy-savings, and achievement of safe and secure society.

Latest R&D Trends and Future Developments of 5G Technology

he fifth-generation mobile communications (5G), which is scheduled to be fully serviced in Japan in 2020, will realize communications with enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB), Ultra-Reliable and Low Latency Communications (URLLC), and massive Machine Type Communications (mMTC).

The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC) takes the following measures for launching the service: In fiscal year 2017, performance is evaluated in the fields where 5G will be actively used. In fiscal year 2018, demonstration experiments are performed comprehensively mainly for the eight issues pointed out by the ICT Infrastructure Regional Development Strategy Review Meeting, "workforce", "local industry", "tourism", "education", "mobility", "medical care and nursing care", "disaster prevention and reduction", and "individual number card". In fiscal year 2019, 5G comprehensive demonstration tests are conducted based on the results of the 5G Utilization Idea Contest and aiming at comprehensive solutions to regional problems presented by a local region.

The author’s laboratory is also conducting demonstration experiments in cooperation with companies, such as "autonomous and cooperative driving support using 5G and MEC" with NTT Docomo for the use of low-latency communications (press release in November 2018) and "4K video transmission using 5G drone" with KDDI Corporation for the use of large-capacity communications (at the University of Tokyo campus, press release in June 2018 and at the 2018 Cycling Shimanami, press release in October 2018).

KDDI Outlines Efforts Toward Building New 5G Society

ifth-generation (5G) communications technology is expected to play a variety of roles in the society, including addressing global, national, and regional social issues, adding a new value to entertainment and to enjoy sports, and so on. KDDI, in close collaboration with partners from a variety of industries and/or local societies, has been carrying out 5G field trials in combination with advanced technologies in order to accomplish these goals. This article describes the outlines and the results of the two 5G field trials, that is, the application to remote control of construction machinery and the application to stadium entertainment employing free-viewpoint video technology.

Remote Control of Construction Machinery
With the increasing number of natural disasters in Japan, it is of growing importance to recover from these disasters promptly, while maintaining safety of operators engaged in recovery activities. In contrast, the number of skilled operators of construction machinery is decreasing, and it is essential to compensate for the shortage of these work resources.

The concept of remote control of construction machinery has been developed to cope with these issues, and is already in use. Wireless technologies including Wi-Fi are presently used for remote control, however, the application suffers from restrictions in terms of speed, capacity, latency and availability, because of limitations of present wireless technologies. 5G is expected to remove these restrictions taking advantage of its enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB) and Ultra-reliable and Low Latency Communications (URLLC) capabilities.

5G Undergoes Overall System Test in Truck Platooning

esearch and development is underway toward the full-fledged commercialization of fifth-generation (5G) mobile communication systems in 2020. In addition to extending the capabilities of 4G networks with enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB), 5G will provide capabilities in the new domains of Ultra-reliable and Low Latency Communication (URLLC) and massive Machine Type Communication (mMTC), and is highly anticipated as a social infrastructure for advanced information society. URLLC and mMTC, in particular, have the potential for developing new markets, and establishing concrete 5G applications for these is an urgent matter.

Japan’s Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC) began 5G system trials in the country in FY2017[1]. These trials requested the evaluation of 5G wireless system technologies for commercial use, as well as trials of 5G in collaboration with other vertical sectors, that is, the use of 5G in sectors other than mobile communications.

Private 4G/5G Networks Make Big Impacts on Social Infrastructure

ifth-generation (5G) mobile communication system can provide capabilities beyond those of 4G/LTE system, and will be relevant to advanced usage scenarios, such as enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB), Ultra-Reliable and Low Latency Communications (URLLC), and massive Machine Type Communications (mMTC). Figure 1 shows 5G usage scenarios depicted in Recommendation ITU-R M.2083 “IMT Vision – Framework and overall objectives of the future development of IMT for 2020 and beyond”. Public 5G networks will, in principle, be deployed by mobile network operators (MNOs), while the so called “private 5G” or “local 5G” networks may be built by other entities in addition to MNOs networks in order to satisfy specific requirements from users/owners of local premises. Such requirements include low latency, security, high reliability, and high availability, among others.

Role of Private Networks in Industries
The use cases of private/local networks are expected in different industry areas, that is, factory automation or manufacturing, process automation, smart port/harbor, mining and so on. In the area of smart manufacturing, for example, a German electric vehicle manufacture e.GO has built a private 5G network for its factory facilitated with edge-computing technologies in order to increase its efficiency in production.1

For the mining use case, private/local networks have already been built based on 4G/LTE technology. For example, Ericsson and Ambra Solutions have worked together to deliver an underground LTE network for the Agnico Eagle mining site in Quebec, Canada.2 Meanwhile, it is expected that 5G connectivity would be used to control heavy machinery remotely provided with ultralow latency and high-speed video communication.

Digi-Key to Offer Ready-to-Use Modules from Directed Energy

igi-Key Electronics has signed an exclusive global distribution partnership with Directed Energy, Inc., beefing up its more than 8.7 million products available from 800 plus manufacturers through Digi-Key.

Directed Energy provides ready-to-use modules for driving laser diodes as well as applications requiring a high voltage pulse. Directed Energy’s modules allow users to focus on their end use or product with ready-made solutions to provide high current and high voltage pulses to scientific, industrial, and commercial applications.

“Now, as a Digi-Key partner, we are excited to know that our pulsed laser diode driver and high voltage pulse modules will offer that same problem-solving value to designers and engineers around the world and in a wide array of industries,” Stephen Krausse, president and owner of Directed Energy, Inc.

Resonant MLCC for High-Power Wireless Charging

he newly developed multilayer ceramic capacitors from Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. have achieved rated voltages of 630V and 1,000V by employing a low-loss material. They are designed for application in resonant circuits incorporated in wireless power transfer (WPT) for vehicles, on-board chargers for electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHVs), LLC power supplies, and other high-power applications.

Capacitors for these resonant circuits require at least 10nF and stable capacitance, and, conventionally, film capacitors were the only option. However, today, multilayer ceramic capacitors are the mainstream as they have the following advantages compared with film capacitors: 1) small volume; 2) low heat generation [low equivalent series resistance (ESR)]; 3) low equivalent series inductance (ESL); 4) excellent long term reliability, and 5) high maximum operating temperature.

Aluminum Electrolytic Capacitors Advance in Rated Voltage for Industrial Use

he characteristics of aluminum electrolytic capacitors are based primarily on aluminum electrodes. Using an anodic oxide film with a high relative permittivity yields capacitors with large capacitance. Aluminum is one of the most readily available and inexpensive metals available today, and aluminum adoption yields lower production costs compared with other capacitors.

Aluminum electrolytic capacitors feature a rolled cylindrical structure wherein a separator paper is inserted between anode and cathode aluminum electrode foils (hereinafter referred to as component). The structure alone is not enough to allow the component to function as a capacitor. To function as a capacitor, it must be impregnated with an electrolytic solution having electrically conductive properties. Terminations are attached to the element, and the element is sealed in an aluminum case and covered with an exterior sleeve to complete its structure as a capacitor.

There are many types of aluminum electrolytic capacitors, among which include chip, leaded, snap-in terminal, and screw terminal. This paper will discuss recent market trends and new technologies on snap-in and screw-terminal large aluminum electrolytic capacitors.

High-Reliability DLCAP EDLCs Rev up for Automotives

he global economy is dependent on fossil fuels, which are finite resources that had been created over hundreds of million years. In order to solve today’s energy situation, in recent years, efforts toward the effective use of energy have been made, and it is very important to use energy storage devices that can store generated power with high efficiency.

There are two types of energy storage devices: rechargeable batteries that can store large capacity of power, and electric double-layer capacitors (EDLCs) that can store and discharge large current instantaneously. EDLCs have excellent characteristics in terms of high efficiency charge and discharge and long life. They are implemented in instantaneous voltage drop compensators, electric trains, heavy construction machinery and automobiles.

Nippon Chemi-Con Corporation has been mass producing DLCAP EDLCs for consumer application since 2003, and since 2012, the company has been mass producing the DXE Series large screw terminal type for automotive application.

Component | Materials
Cutting-Edge Film Barrier Expands to Various Applications
The properties of the transparent barrier film of Dai Nippon Printing have been enhanced by modifying the structure of the multiple layer film to suit various applications.

ai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd (DNP) has successfully expanded applications for its Innovative Barrier Film (IB-FILM). The transparent barrier film will also be used in industrial applications, such as display components.

IB-FILM is a transparent deposition film maintaining advanced barrier properties against water vapor and oxygen based on the proprietary DNP deposition technology and special coating technology.

In this latest development, the mechanical aptitude and optical properties have been enhanced by modifying the structure of the multiple layer film. In addition, the barrier properties of the IB-FILM have also been heightened beyond those levels required to packaging. The expanded-use IB-FILM will be developed as a base material for incorporation into various products with industrial applications, while further effort will also be put into sales.

Component | Materials
New E-Beam Resist Brings Lithography to New Heights
The new high-performance positive electron beam resist features cutting-edge functions and characteristics fit for the manufacture of next-generation electronic devices.

EON Corporation has introduced an addition to its ZEP Series for electron beam lithography. The ZEP Series has been commercially available for over 20 years now and is designed as a main chain scission-type positive-tone photoresist.

ZEP530A is a high-performance positive electron beam resist with ultrafine resolution, superior dry etch resistance, and wide process margin. Thin film formation is possible depending on the coating condition.

ZEP530A offers excellent dry etch resistance, wide lithography process margins, and ultra-high resolution. ZEP530A can easily resolve 17nm half pitch line and space pattern. Combining ZEP530A with the newly developed ZED-N60, an even higher resolution can be achieved.

Top-view of scanning electron microscope line and space pattern
Top-view of scanning electron microscope line and space pattern

ZEP530A is an excellent fit for manufacturing of next-generation electronics devices, including 5G wireless technology. ZEP530A is the next benchmark for positive photoresists in electron beam lithography while ZEON continues the development roadmap for photoresists.

Component | Materials

SDK Technique Joins Two Elements Sans Mechanical Joining

Based on special surface treatment and primer treatment, the bonding technology realizes sufficient bonding strength for both aluminum alloys and polycarbonate resin.

howa Denko K.K. (SDK) has developed an innovative technology that directly joins aluminum alloys and polycarbonate resin, a commodity amorphous engineering plastic, without using an adhesive.’

Diagram of the new bonding technique
Diagram of the new bonding technique

It has been a common process to bond aluminum alloys and polycarbonate resin through mechanical joining such as bolt, or adhesive bonding using an adhesive. In recent years, attention is focused on new technologies that directly join or bond resin materials from injection molding to metallic materials. These new technologies are expected to simplify process, increase productivity, and enable processing into complicated shapes.

In many cases, however, they depend on mechanical bonding power, such as an anchor effect resulting from injection of resin into roughened metal surface. Thus, it was believed that polycarbonate resin and other amorphous engineering plastics would not be suitable for bonding metallic materials by conventional methods.

Component | Materials

Blue Luminescent Material Exhibits High Color Purity
The new OLED display material has color purity of light emission that surpassed that of LEDs.

joint research team of Kwansei Gakuin University and JNC Petrochemical Corporation has developed a blue luminescent material for organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays, which features color purity surpassing that of quantum dots and LEDs.

The practical use of OLED has been progressing for flat-panel displays, replacing LCDs. However, the color purity of light emission organic light-emitting materials is low.

Challenges of OLEDs

When using organic light-emitting materials with low color purity for displays, it is necessary to remove unnecessary colors from the emission spectrum using an optical filter to improve color purity, and as a result, the display’s brightness and power efficiency significantly decrease.

NI Partners with Spirox, Touches Base on Full IC Ecosystem
NI Partners with Spirox
Jimmy Lin (left), General Manager of NI Taiwan and Henry Kao, Chief Executive Officer of Spirox Corporation

aiwan-based Spirox Corporation, a distributor of semiconductor testing equipment, signed a contract with National Instruments (NI) in May 2019, under which Spirox will sell NI’s semiconductor test system facilities, support application engineering, and provide customer service operations in the Greater China region.

Founded in 1987, Spirox has, among its partners, leading suppliers worldwide, including AFORE, ERS, Hamamatsu, Northstar, SEMICS, ShibaSoku, Toray, Translarity, Turbodynamics, and YIKC, among others, providing various integrated solutions to fulfill customer needs in testing, packaging, inspection, and verification in the semiconductor industry.


Laser Processing Technology Builds up Role in Manufacturing Process
Aside from laser products, manufacturing equipment are also being equipped with laser devices for better performance, thus expanding potential demand.

mid diversification of manufacturing methods and processes in manufacturing, laser processing technology attracts attention and its application in manufacturing equipment has been progressing.

In laser processing technology, metals and other materials are processed by irradiating amplified light. As lasers have excellent directivity, laser processing technology is suitable for microfabrication as well. It is similar to the mechanism of condensing sunlight using a convex lens.

The market of laser beam machines
Photo 1: The market of laser beam machines has been expanding.

According to a survey on optoelectronics industry trends conducted by the Optoelectronics Industry and Technology Development Association in Japan, shipments in the laser and optical processing field continued to grow from ¥628.4 billion (representing an annual increase of 15.5 percent) in FY2016 to ¥715.8 billion (representing an annual increase of 13.9 percent) in FY2017, and to ¥783.1 billion (representing an annual increase of 9.4 percent) in FY2018. In particular, solid lasers and fiber lasers drove the growth.


Manufacturing Players Tap AI to Create 24/7 Production Equipment
To address mainly the shortage of labor, AI is now being employed to achieve non-stop and high-quality production in manufacturing facilities.

lectronic manufacturers have been upping the ante in the development of technologies to detect abnormalities of equipment in factories and plants by making the most of artificial intelligence (AI). This is in response to the growing needs to reduce manpower for the maintenance of production equipment amid labor shortage and the aging of the labor force in manufacturing sites. Moves to provide a boost to “non-stop equipment” using AI have begun to heat up.

Improves Abnormality Detection

Mitsubishi Electric Corporation targets to put to practical use the first diagnostic technology to detect abnormalities of equipment in factories with high accuracy using AI. It uses data collected by various sensors, such as voltage, vibration, and temperature sensors installed in equipment. Based on these data, AI automatically determines the changes in the operation of equipment and detects even slight signs of failure.

Equipment in factories shows abnormalities in different frequencies and manners for each operation, and therefore, there were limits in improving abnormality detection accuracy. Mitsubishi Electric, however, has succeeded in improving the ratio of erroneous detection from 15 percent to 5 percent.

Test System Gets GCF Certification for 5G mmWave RF Conformance Tests
Using 5G NR mmWave RF conformance tests, Anritsu’s ME7873NR takes the lead in solving mmWave technical issues.

nritsu Corporation’s ME7873NR New Radio (NR) radio frequency (RF) conformance system has achieved a Global Certification Forum (GCF) certification for 5G NR millimeter wave (mmWave) RF conformance tests as an industry first.

ME7873NR New Radio RF conformance test system
ME7873NR New Radio RF conformance test system

The ME7873NR New Radio RF conformance test system is an automated system for 3GPP TS38.521/TS38.533-defined 5G NR RF/RRM tests. It supports both planned 5G NR Standalone (SA) and Non-Standalone (NSA) modes, while its combination with Anritsu’s MA8172A CATR anechoic chamber covers all 5G frequency bands, including sub-6GHz and mmWave. A flexible system configuration allows customers to customize ME7873NR for specific measurement conditions. An easy 5G upgrade path from the ME7873LA LTE-Advanced RF conformance test system is available to create a cost-effective RF test system that meets emerging required test conditions.

ME7873NR is registered already with GCF as 5G NR RF/RRM test platform TP250, and has been deployed widely since Jan. 2019 for industry-first GCF-certified sub-6GHz RF conformance tests. This new mmWave certification received at the July 2019 CAG meeting will help ME7873NR take the lead in solving mmWave technical issues using 5G NR mmWave NSA RF conformance tests.

Anritsu is continuing its development of conformance test solutions to help improve 5G technologies and develop the 5G ecosystem.

PCB, EA Sourcing Platform to Host Biggest Show in History

fter 17 successful editions as an important integrative event for sourcing, information and technology exchange, industry networking, and business development, the International Printed Circuit & APEX South China Fair will now carry the name 2019 International Electronics Circuit Exhibition (Shenzhen), bringing along the latest products, services, and solutions spanning the printed circuit board (PCB) and electronics assembly (EA) supply chain.

This year’s theme, Converging Ideas. Steering Innovation. Navigating Industry, reflects the enormous value of the show in different areas by gathering industry leaders to exchange ideas and information; showcasing new technology; and helping shape the industry’s future development. With expanding technological trends, like 5G, artificial intelligence, big data, internet of things, and cloud computing making new demands on the industry, the show provides valuable information on these changes and highlights the exciting opportunities they present.

2019 International Electronics Circuit Exhibition (Shenzhen) will be held at the Shenzhen Convention & Exhibition Center in Shenzhen, China from Dec. 4 to 6. As organizer, the Hong Kong Printed Circuit Association (HKPCA) is joining hands with the China Printed Circuit Association (CPCA) to present the 18th edition of the show. This new partnership is dedicated to delivering an even more fruitful experience for all participants in this influential event.

Technology | Highlight
Interlayed Perovskites Create Ultrathin OLED for Large Displays

y combining thin organic layers with thick layers of hybrid perovskite, researchers at Kyushu University in Japan have developed micrometer-thick organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) that could improve the affordability and viewing angles of high-performance displays and televisions in the near future.

OLEDs use layers of organic molecules to efficiently convert electricity into light. The molecules, though great emitters, are generally poor electrical conductors, and the only way is to achieve materials as thin as 100nm, or about 1/500 the thickness of a human hair. Only by using such thin layers can electricity easily reach where emission occurs in the middle of devices.

While extremely thin layers benefit from needing only a small amount of material, the use of such thin films complicates the reliable fabrication of millions of pixels because extremely small defects can cause device failure. Furthermore, light reflecting between the front and back of the thin layers often results in interactions—called cavity effects—that slightly distort the emission color at large viewing angles.

Technology | Highlight
Technology Yields Higher-Efficiency GaN Micro LEDs

he National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) and Tohoku University have developed a technology to enhance the efficiency of gallium nitride (GaN) micro light-emitting diodes (LEDs). From now on, AIST and Tohoku University plan to create green and red micro LEDs using the developed technology in order to achieve full-color micro LED displays.

With the rapid spread of wearable and portable information terminals as interface between information terminals and humans, displays are strongly required to have lower power consumption, higher luminance, and higher resolution. Recently, micro LED displays, in which micro LEDs about 10μm in size are arranged in high density, have been attracting attention. Micro LED displays are said to enable low power consumption that is one-tenth or lower, high luminance that is 10,000 times or higher, and high resolution about 10 times more than conventional LCDs and organic LED displays.

In general, conventional micro LEDs have been created by processing plane LED wafer using the inductively coupled plasma (ICP) etching technology. However, as the sides of micro LEDs are exposed to plasma in this technology, defects that do not contribute to light emission occur on the sides of LEDs in high density. As the size of the LED gets smaller, the ratio of sides on which defects occur increases, and the number of electrons that are captured by defects and do not contribute to light emission increases. For this reason, with conventional micro LEDs, in the low current density (<20A/cm2) region, which is especially important for the operation of displays, light-emission efficiency rapidly reduces with the reduction in the size of LED. Hence, it has been difficult to achieve micro LED displays with high efficiency, high luminance and high resolution.

Multi-Layered Metals Heighten Sensitivity of Motion Sensors

okyo Institute of Technology and NTT Advanced Technology Corporation have developed a high-sensitivity and low-noise microelectromechanical system (MEMS) accelerometer by using multi-layer metal structures. The accelerometer achieves 1µG level resolution, which has been a challenging task with conventional MEMS technology.

The proposed technology is an innovative solution to increase the resolution of miniaturized accelerometers for general-purpose use.

Balancing Size, Noise Reduction
A significant increase in the demand of accelerometers is expected as the market for consumer electronics, such as smartphones, and social infrastructure monitoring applications are expanding. Such miniaturized and mass-producible accelerometers are commonly developed by silicon MEMS technology where the fabrication process is well established.

In the design of accelerometers, there is a trade-off between size reduction and noise reduction because the mechanical noise dominated by the Brownian noise is inversely proportional to the mass of the moving electrode called proof mass. Moreover, as for capacitive accelerometers, the sensitivity is generally proportional to the accelerometer size, and thus there is also a trade-off between the size reduction and the sensitivity increase. As high-resolution accelerometers require low noise and high sensitivity performances, it has been difficult for conventional silicon-based MEMS accelerometers to detect 1µG level input acceleration.

Toshiba Taps AI for PV Power Generation Prediction Technology

oshiba Corporation has recently developed a high-accuracy photovoltaic power generation prediction technology using its proprietary artificial intelligence (AI) technology. Even if the performance and installation conditions of photovoltaic power generation facility are unknown, this technology enables high-accuracy prediction of power generation amount by estimating the performance and installation conditions using AI. Using this technology has improved prediction error by about 9.8 percent prior to the use of this technology, according to Toshiba.

The developed technology enables the construction of a prediction model that can be easily explained using data relating to power generation amount, including sunshine strength, temperature, wind velocity, snowfall, and reflection rate of sunlight, which are obtained from the prediction system using a numerical weather prediction model, the company is originally operating. With respect to sunshine strength, which greatly affects power generation amount, prediction accuracy has been enhanced by having AI learn the tendency of errors between predicted values and actually measured values.

Flexible Sensor Material Suits Upmarket Automotive Touch Panels

oray Industries, Inc., has commenced volume production of RAYBRID, a conductive silver paste that incorporates a photosensitive resin. The material can enhance the motoring experience by improving the visibility and operability of automotive touch panels. The flexibility of RAYBRID can also contribute to larger, curved screens. Some display modules already employ this material.

Bringing Benefits to Auto Display
Toray released RAYBRID in 2012 as a trace material for touch sensors in smartphones. The material has since contributed to lower resistance for larger displays while enabling finer patterning, for narrower bezels. With its proven reliability in smartphones, RAYBRID can match the rigorous performance requirements of automotive displays.

Automotive touch panels conventionally use indium tin oxide (ITO) electrodes that have solid records of mass production and reliability. However, there are issues with panels larger than eight inches, including pattern visibility and high resistance. It is also hard to detect electrical changes on sensing areas, causing reaction delays and misoperations.

ROHM Employs Unique Process in Automotive-Grade MOSFETs

OHM Co. Ltd. has developed the ultra-compact 1.6×1.6mm metal oxide semiconductor field-effect transistors (MOSFETs) that deliver superior mounting reliability. The RV4xxx Series is AEC-Q101 qualified, ensuring automotive-grade reliability and performance under extreme conditions. ROHM’s original package processing technology enables the miniaturization of automotive components that demand high quality, such as advanced driver assistance.

Consistent Solder Quality
In recent years, the growing number of vehicle safety and convenience systems such as ADAS cameras has emphasized the challenge of limited space to accommodate these systems, and spurring the demand for smaller components. To meet this need, bottom electrode type MOSFETs that can be miniaturized while maintaining high current are increasingly attracting attention.

However, for automotive applications, optical inspection is performed during the assembly process to ensure quality, but in the case of bottom electrode components, solder height cannot be verified after mounting, making it difficult to confirm mounting conditions.

Mass Production of All-Solid-State Batteries Gains Steam

ass production of all-solid-state batteries using oxide solid electrolyte has been gathering steam. The adoption of all-solid-state batteries has begun in applications that enable them to be mounted using the same mounting method for typical surface-mounted devices (SMDs). These involve areas where compactness and safety are required rather than large capacities, such as Internet of things (IoT) and wearable devices. Electronic components manufacturers, such as TDK Corporation, Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. and FDK Corporation, are set to start volume production of these power devices.

The development of all-solid-state batteries that adopt sulfide-based, oxide-based, and resin-based solid electrolytes has become active. Among electronic components manufacturers, companies that handle ceramic components, including multilayer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs), are commencing mass production of small SMD-type all-solid-state batteries using the firing process technology, which is their core technology.

All-solid-state batteries using oxide solid electrolyte feature excellent incombustibility, water-resistant property, and high battery safety, although they fared poorly with existing batteries and sulfide-based all-solid-state batteries in terms of ion conductivity. Furthermore, they can be handled using the same mounting form as that of SMDs, which are typical electronic components. Therefore, their adoption in IoT devices and wearable devices, with which reduction of power consumption advances, as well as for the control of semiconductor devices, has begun.

Company | On the move
ProLogium’s Solid-State Battery Pack Solution Gets Global Recognition

aiwanese company ProLogium Technology Co., Ltd. is a manufacturer of solid-sate rechargeable batteries and is based in Taoyuan City. It was established in 2006 with a capitalization of US$100 million. At present, it employs 460 personnel.

Conventional lithium ion batteries use combustible electrolytic solution, while solid-state rechargeable batteries adopt lithium ceramic electrolyte and provide high safety with no possibility of ignition.

Vincent Yang, Chief Executive Officer of ProLogium, says, “Our company’s lithium ceramic batteries (LCBs) have a structure with a ceramic electrolyte between cathode and anode. Their battery capacities can be increased by expanding the area of or laminating ceramic electrolyte. Although it was difficult, we established in 2018 a mass production technology for LCBs using our company’s original roll-to-roll manufacturing technology. As a result, it has become possible to produce uniform-quality products and to reduce costs.”

Diamond Electric Holdings Upscales Sales Targets with Merger

iamond Electric Holdings Co., Ltd., together with Diamond Electric Mfg. Co., Ltd. and Tabuchi Electric Co., Ltd., which became its group company in Oct. 2018, targets sales of ¥100 billion, operating profit ratio of 6.0 percent, and return on equity (ROE) of 15 percent or higher in FY2021.

“After Tabuchi Electric became part of the group company, sales in the term ending Mar. 2020 will surpass ¥70 billion for the first time. As ¥100 billion sales is now within our sight, this will allow our employees and technologies to survive. If we merge the two companies’ technologies and businesses and moderately collaborate with external companies, it becomes possible. We can do this by offering open sources to grow new businesses, while firmly growing existing businesses through existing customers of Diamond Electric Mfg.’s ignition coils and Tabuchi Electric’s power conditioners and transformers. After reaching the ¥100 billion sales target, it aims to improve profitability and to build the company’s reputation among customers as their preferred supplier. It is important to continue growing as being stagnant means death for the company,” notes Yuuri Ono, President, Chief Executive Officer & Representative Director at Diamond Electric Holdings Co., Ltd.; President, Group Chief Executive Officer & Representative Director at Diamond Electric Mfg. Co., Ltd.; and President at Tabuchi Electric Co., Ltd.

Nihon Denkei Eyes Steady Growth in Vietnam

ihon Denkei Vietnam Co., Ltd. has been bullish in Vietnam and it expects to sustain its growth trajectory in the market in the coming years. The company sees huge potentials in the market, which stands to benefit from the ongoing trade disputes between China and the United States.

In an interview with AEI, Hagiwara Satoru, Deputy General Director at Nihon Denkei Vietnam said the company’s business has been consistently growing, although he said this has relaxed a bit last year. The company expects to grow though this year.

“Vietnam market is still developing but I can say, compared with other markets in the region, we find more potentials here. For Nihon Denkei, we have been consistently having good projects in recent years, although we have some slow down last year but this is just temporary,” said Satoru.

Business | Strategy
Hirose Electric Intensifies Pitch to Sustain Growth Prospects

espite the continuing advancements of technologies in the application segments of electronics connectors, industry observers believe the market is up for some sluggish episodes due to challenges in capital investments, among others. Many connector companies, meanwhile, have started to implement aggressive strategies to solidify their position in the market and cope with the changing customer requirements and business landscapes.

To get a glimpse of the latest industry trends and strategies employed by connector companies of late, AEI spoke with Shinya Tono, General Manager, Product Marketing & Planning Leader, Global Marketing Dept., Sales & Marketing Group at Hirose Electric Co., Ltd.

AEI: What are the recent business trends taking place in the industry of late?

Tono: The market situation is not so good due to reduced capital investments. The WSTS global semiconductor market forecast has been revised downward to a considerable decline by two digits this year. However, we believe the business of our company can be a little positive in comparison with the overall market decline.

NEPCON Asia | 2019
Mounter Companies Pitch Total Production Lines in China


apanese mounter manufacturers are looking for opportunities for the recovery of demand in the Chinese market. At NEPCON Asia 2019, they proposed total production lines, which encompass cutting-edge equipment and pre- and post-mounting processes, as well as solutions, including smart factory, amid the continuing brake on investments in plant and equipment stemming from trade tensions between the United States and China.

Some Chinese manufacturers continue to curb investments in plants and equipment as affected by trade tensions between the United States and China. The impacts of the fourth round of retaliatory tariffs the United States put in motion on Sept. 1 are also a concern.

In the meantime, in China, Chinese companies, including Huawei Technologies Co., have begun to invest in the fifth-generation (5G) mobile communications-related sector, and the demand for mounters has surfaced. In addition, new demand accompanying the production shift from China to India has also begun to emerge.

Show | Preview
NEPCON Vietnam | 2019
Industry Players Track Growth Opportunities in Vietnam


everal players from various industries converged at Nepcon Vietnam 2019, which marked the vast advancements of Vietnam’s electronics industry. Event organizer Reed Tradex Vietnam said the annual event, which is the 12th edition this year, has gathered around 200 companies of technology suppliers from 20 countries with seven international pavilions, opening up opportunities for businesses amid the country’s vibrant outlook.

With the emergence of various opportunities in Vietnam’s electronics industry, electronic manufacturers and ecosystem players saw immense opportunities in joining NEPCON Vietnam 2019, an exhibition on surface mount technology, testing technologies, equipment and supporting industries for electronics manufacturing with the theme 360º Manufacturing Integration.

The event was able to gather state-of-the-art technologies and solutions from over 200 brands, particularly coming from Singapore, China, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, United States, and Vietnam. The three-day exhibition will also host business networking opportunities and some conferences where local electronics businesses are able to connect with various partners around the world to transfer technology, enhance production capacity and supplies.

Show | Preview
productronica India | 2019
ASM Paves Way for Seamless Smart Factory Integration


t this year’s productronica India, ASM Assembly Systems once again proved its manufacturing technology leadership as it presented itself as a competent partner for the digital transformation of the electronics industry. In addition to powerful line and workflow solutions, the company demonstrated open interfaces and protocols for total connectivity, and seamless data and process integration. They range from the seamless tracking of each circuit board on its path through the surface-mounted technology (SMT) lines through the IPC Hermes 9852 standard to communicating process data through interfaces, like ASM OIB or IPC CFX to state-of-the-art SMT-specific manufacturing execution system (MES) software to multi-plant integration through an industrial internet of things (IIoT) and cloud platform. Visitors at productronica learned how they can do away with standalone solutions and benefit from connecting and integrating their monitoring, planning, control, and maintenance operations

Advancing Standardization of Protocols
ASM pursues many initiatives to advance the standardization of data protocols in the electronics industry. One result is the open Hermes protocol, which ASM has developed jointly with other equipment makers as a successor to the Surface Mount Equipment Manufacturing Association (SMEMA) standard. Based on modern standards, like TCP/IP and XML, it has been recognized officially as the IPC-Hermes-9852 protocol for communicating printed circuit board (PCB)-related information across machines in a non-proprietary manner. Users can now track boards seamlessly through the line with a single reader.

Show | Report
SEMICON Taiwan | 2019
Semiconductor Event Ushers into Smart Future


EMICON Taiwan, an international trade show on semiconductor manufacturing equipment and materials, was held from Sep. 18 to 20 in Taipei, Taiwan.

With the theme “Leading the Smart Future,” this year’s event drew about 700 exhibitors that deployed 2,300 booths from the global semiconductor manufacturing supply chain.

Requirements for semiconductor manufacturing and packaging technologies, such as ultrasmall, higher-performance, and high-density packaging, become increasingly tougher year after year, and technological innovations to meet the demands have also been accelerating. At the center of development is Taiwan, which houses the largest foundry, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Ltd. (TSMC), and one of the leading packaging and testing providers, Advanced Semiconductor Engineering, Inc. (ASE).

SEMICON Taiwan was full of industry professionals who are eager to witness leading-edge devices, machines, and technologies in the semiconductor field.

Product | News
Components & Devices
Murata’s BLF03VK Series Noise Filters
Murata’s BLF03VK Series Noise Filters
Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. has started mass production of the compact BLF03VK Series noise filters specifically designed for the 5GHz band to improve communication sensitivity in Wi-Fi (wireless LAN) environments. The new series suppresses noise in the 5GHz band that interferes with Wi-Fi signals, contributing to improved data processing capability and faster data transmission. These products are the first noise filters that provide a guaranteed impedance value at 5GHz band. The lineup includes two models with specifications of 220Ω at 5GHz/0.8A rated current and 60Ω at 5GHz/1.2A rated current, respectively. The compact noise filters measuring 0.6 × 0.3mm has controlled impedance frequency characteristics to maximize the suppression of noise in the 5GHz band.
Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.

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