Ticona Vectra LCP plays key role in 3-D MID flow sensor

Ticona Vectra LCP plays key role in 3-D MID flow sensor
2E mechatronic GmbH & Co. KG of Germany has designed a 3-D molded interconnect device (MID) flow sensor for air conditioning systems that uses Vectra E840i LDS, a liquid crystal polymer (LCP) specially developed by Ticona for electronic circuits on 3-D injection moldings produced with a Laser Direct Structuring (LDS) process.

As the Research Association Molded Interconnect Devices 3-D-MID-e.V. 2011 MID Innovation Prize winner, the 2E mechatronic MID component is injection molded entirely from Vectra E840i LDS, a laser-activatable grade that Ticona specially developed for use with the LPKF Laser & Electronics AG LDS process. The tracks on the 12-by10-by-6-millimeter device are etched with LPKF laser equipment that selectively activates the laser sensitive additive in the Ticona LCP.

Vectra E840i LDS, the newest MID specialty grade from Ticona, is 40 percent mineral filled with special LDS additive, reflow solderable, more isotropic than typical glass-filled LCP.

“Vectra E840i LDS enables efficient production of 3-D chip carriers when using the LDS process,” said Achim Hofmann, EU consumer market development manager. “The 2E mechatronic MID component is injection molded entirely from Vectra E840i LDS, a grade specially developed by Ticona for LDS. Specific areas of the component are activated by LPKF laser to create a circuit pattern that is subsequently electrolysis plated to form conductive tracks.”

The advantage of this process is its great flexibility, especially for sensors, microphone modules or ring contacts that can be produced directly and cost-efficiently in low volumes. If the layout of the conductor tracks has to be changed, it is only necessary to reprogram the laser.

2E mechatronic, a leading supplier of MID components, worked on the chip-based sensor project with relay and switch specialist Gruner AG, research institute HSG Hahn-Schickard-Gesellschaft and micro-sensor developer MicroMountains Applications AG, all of Germany.

The leading supplier of MID-components has developed a laser structured MID-LED light component for dental lamps in Vectra 840i LDS. 2E mechatronic sees potential for using MID-LEDs in automats, and house and street lighting. And Harting Mitronics has developed MIDs such as a camera module MID with a Vectra E840i LDS substrate for the Sick V300 Work Station camera.

With more than 15 years of experience in MID technology, Ticona developed this latest Vectra LCP grade and designed other Vectra LCP solutions for processing with 3D MID and LDS technologies.

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