IMAPS Device Packaging 2010, Day 2

Contributed by Paul Werbaneth, Vice President, Marketing & Applications, Tegal Corporation

Day 2, Tuesday 09 March 2010

Cactus league games cancelled by baseball-sized hail

Tuesday, March 09, 2010 Scottsdale, AZ — Spring cactus league games were cancelled in the Valley of the Sun today due to baseball-sized hail.  Indoor activities, including IMAPS Device Packaging 2010, were unaffected.

Oh intrepid mariners of the S.S. MEMS, do you know that for most of recorded history sailors never sailed out of sight from shore?  But you, bold sojourners, with your Innovative Micro-Technologies for positioning, navigation, and timing instruments (Andrei Shkel, DARPA), need never cast a glance shoreward, free instead to follow the Siren’s song to rich, new, golden lands.

Others endeavor after you in your wake!  But just look how far advanced you are already in 3D interconnect technology.  No wonder others follow.

I said yesterday I was going to be forced to choose between the 3D Packaging track at the Device Packaging conference today, and the MEMS track, after starting with the morning keynote talks.

Now, what would you expect from a keynote talk called “3D Interconnect – The Challenges Ahead” (Brandon Prior, Prismark)?  Me, I never would have expected to hear Brandon say the commercial 3D Through Silicon Via drivers today are CMOS Image Sensors, MEMS, RF components, and discretes.  Nor would I have expected to hear that over the next three to five years the commercial 3D TSV drivers will continue to be CIS, MEMS, RF components, and discretes.  I wouldn’t have expected anyone in a 3D Interconnect Challenges talk to show an Avago FBAR filter with a TSV structure part of the wafer cap, or an Epcos MEMS microphone with a TSV structure in the package, and, if I had thought about it, I wouldn’t have pegged both products (with TSV) as having been on the commercial market for years.

But, that’s just what Brandon did.  Pointed to MEMS and CMOS image sensors (MEMS?  maybe) as being the poster children for commercial, practical implementations of TSV processing today.  (Dream on, all you other crazy diamonds.)

And you know what?  The MEMS, errr, 3D Packaging, track went on like that all day.

One highlight (still 3D Packaging) for me was the eCUBES project, from  Fraunhofer (Peter Ramm): self-organizing wireless sensor networks to monitor the environment, using ultra-miniature MEMS and IC systems integrated  by 3D packaging technology.  Commercial partners are Thales (aerospace expertise), Philips (healthcare expertise), and Infineon (tire pressure monitoring expertise).  Wasn’t it Peter Drucker who said, “If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it?”  Hmm, that seems to apply readily to tire pressure, to personal health, and to the complex dynamics of flight.  Much less apply to the global environment.  I like this track!

Next up in the rotation from Fraunhofer is eBRAINS – I can’t wait.

From Scottsdale, AZ, where it’s nothin’ but sunny days, thanks for reading.

P.S. Sad recent news from Knoxville, Tenn., where Mark Linkous, a.k.a. Sparklehorse, committed suicide last week.  The Sparklehorse record “It’s A Wonderful Life,” to which I listened obsessively in the days following 9/11, was a great comfort to me during those unsettled times.  In pace requiescat.

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