Stretchy or Foldable Glass That is Hard to Believe Without Seeing it

We are associating a lot of properties with glass such as a low coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE), great dielectric constant, transparency, typically high surface quality and flatness. But the terms “stretchy” or “foldable” don’t necessarily come to mind, although glass has some excellent mechanical properties. Exploiting the full mechanical flexibility that glass has to offer often means that the glass substrate has to be cut or machined to create slits and openings for the glass to move freely. Such a technique is being used by paper artists and is commonly referred to as Kirigami. Unfortunately, glass is difficult to machine in complex patterns and even if it is cut successfully, the cutting or drilling process usually creates stress in the molecular matrix of the glass substrate which significantly reduces its mechanical flexibility without causing any breakage.

Laser-induced deep etching, or LIDE for short, is a new glass processing technology that has recently changed this limitation. LPKF Laser & Electronics, a Germany based technology company has started to promote its new glass manufacturing technology with some impressive examples. In a published video the company is showing a 0.5 mm thick glass substrate with a Kirigami slot structure cut into the glass so that it can bend, flex and stretch without breaking.

You can see the video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrzhPuw4tnE.

Now, the company certainly has not developed this technology just to create mind boggling internet videos. The real use behind this technology is to produce through glass vias (TGV) for electronic IC packaging applications, microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) or integrated passive devices in glass. The LIDE technology uses directed laser energy to modify the glass substrate in the desired area and a subsequent wet etching process step to actually form the hole or micro feature in the glass. This technology is extremely accurate and very fast, capable of producing for thousands of holes per second in glass core substrates. As the video demonstrates, this process does not create any inherent stress in the glass, which is a great benefit when it comes to downstream processing of glass wafers in the manufacturing process of integrated circuits or micro devices. LPKF offers its new LIDE glass technology as a foundry service under its new Vitrion brand name.

You can find out more are www.vitrion.com.

How to Streamline Your PCB Prototype Projects in 11 Simple Steps

When it comes to bringing PCB prototype(s) from conception to production, there are many things you can do along the way to ensure that all of the variables are taken care of beforehand and are not consuming your time once rolled-out for production. One of the most crucial aspects is a robust prototyping process.

This is why so many engineers have turned to LPKF’s solutions for in-house PCB prototyping, because of the enhanced technological capabilities, coupled with other clear advantages over outsourcing during the prototyping process, are just too much value to pass up.

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5 Common Mistakes to Avoid During the PCB Design Process

The way in which businesses design, develop, and manufacture products are always evolving—and the landscape of Printed Circuit Board (PCB) is no exception. Designing PCBs is an intricate process that requires highly skilled professionals dedicated to excellence in quality. From beginning to end, the process must be precise and detailed to avoid many of the common mistakes that are bound to occur along the way. This discussion summarizes five common PCB design mistakes and provides simple ways to avoid them.

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How Subtractive Manufacturing Revolutionizes In-House PCB Prototyping

Much attention has been given to 3D printing in recent years as the technology has allowed users to manufacture a wide variety of items – from common mechanical parts to more outrageous projects like Vincent van Gogh’s ear.

While 3D printing was ground-breaking, there is another form of technology revolutionizing the world of rapid prototyping. Known as subtractive manufacturing, this technology is now accessible to companies that previously relied on external services. When coupled with in-house methods for electronics, subtractive manufacturing can drastically reduce design and test cycles.

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6 Reasons to Transition to In-House PCB Prototyping

In the standard prototype design process, a prototype is first designed in-house but is then outsourced to a third party manufacturer. These facilities are often overseas, which consumes both a project’s budgeted time and capital. In response, some R&D departments have innovated in-house prototyping methods like 3D printing and CNC milling, which allow them to create a prototype right in their own labs.

Below are six reasons why you should consider in-house prototyping:

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