CIL offers UK based QFN style plastic packaging in small, medium and volume quantities. In late 2023 once CIL had relocated all of its existing micro-electronics from its CIL House premises to its new world class semiconductor packaging facility at BP2, it could then fully develop this plastic packaging process. CIL
UK semiconductor packaging has for decades been focussed on low volumes using ceramic and metal packages with batch sizes limited to small volumes. ideal for harsh military environments and prototyping, but not optimal for a majority of lower cost semiconductor packaging applications. In mid 2023, CIL opened its BP2 semiconductor packaging facility offering low / medium / volume Chip on Board (COB) assemblies and then 6 months later low / medium / volume QFN plastic packages. The shift to this lower-cost and high-volume compatible plastic packaging technology at CIL is further complimented by CIL's eight SMT lines all capable of placing these devices onto PCBA assemblies.
In early 2021, CIL became the semiconductor assembly partner for a Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) project OranGaN. This project brings together lead partner INEX Microtechnology, CIL with Viper RF and Compound Semiconductor Applications (CSA) Catapult. The project is developing new manufacturing processes and packaging solutions to create 5G components such as Monolithic Microwave Integrated Circuit Chips (MMIC). Currently, there are no commercial RF-GaN devices fully developed and manufactured in the UK that can be used in 5G applications. MMIC chips are used in power amplifiers— components that boost signals before they are transmitted from a base station to smartphones and computers. CIL's participation in the project was to develop QFN style packaging including die attach, wire bonding, plastic overmold, device separation and marking for devices operating at up to 40GHz. As part of the project CIL was able to install a Boschman UNISTAR Auto Plastic overmold machine capable of medium and volume production of QFN style devices.
With the opening of CIL's BP2 semiconductor packaging facility in June 2023, the largest facility in the UK, all of the processes came together in one cleanroom. They include
- Custom Lead-frame design to match die design
- Wafer dicing using DISCO DAD3361 dicing system and associated water purification system
- Die bonding using conductive / non-conductive epoxies
- Die bonding using eutectic soldering via formic acid soldering systems
- Die bonding using Silver Sintering techniques for GaN based power devices
- Gold wedge & Gold ball bonding utilizing advanced automated equipment for high frequency (40GHz) operation
- QFN style Plastic overmold using Boschman UNISTAR overmold machine.
- Device separation using dicing system
- Laser marking identification system
- Die sizes from 0.2mm x 0.2mm upwards
- Wirebond counts from 1 / device up to 100 / device
- And many combinations thereof…
CIL will further enhance this capability by offering chip obsolescence packaging using modern QFN style devices. If the IC is available in die form, then it can be packaged in modern SMT based QFN style and CIL will give its customers this option / capability. Coupled with its 8 SMT lines, accommodating low / medium / volume PCBA assembly, CIL can both manufacture the discrete QFN devices and also assemble onto subsequent PCBA.
As part of a Product Technical Review, we can provide our customers with design proposals detailing appropriate substrates. Additionally, we’ll be able to advise on the choice of materials and finishes. Our Project Management and Engineering Team have the requisite experience and knowledge to help and assist you with this process.