Packaging Technologies for RFIC's: Increasing Integration

Albert C. Imhoff, Jr.
M/A-COM Semiconductor, a Tyco Electronics Company
100 Chelmsford Street, Lowell, MA  01851

In today's telecommunications market, competitive pressures are driving the electrical performance of RF integrated circuit (RFIC's) devices to new levels.  At the same time, the demands placed on packaging of these RFIC's have caused more resources to be focused on solutions.  The result has been that high frequency packaging is called upon to provide low cost, thermally efficient, miniaturized products for a wide range of wireless telecommunications applications.

The packaging of the RFIC's covers a wide range of technologies, with a number showing promise for future developments.  The end applications for these packaged devices range from fixed base systems to high portability, handheld uses.  Both types require that aggressive performance and economic consideration be paid to packaging technique.

In looking ahead to the next generations of wireless products, a key determinant lies on the road to advanced packaging for RFIC's.  System level integration and manufacturing technology for wireless products will likely remain primarily surface mount technology (SMT).  With this constraint and cost considerations, increase level of integration will become the dominant issue.



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