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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2001, MCB UP Limited
This is the first issue of Circuit World for what is, strictly speaking, the first year of the new millennium and the first issue published since I have taken on the role of editor. Having been involved in electronics related research and development since the early 1970s, I have known Circuit World for many years and it is a great honour for me to be able to assume this position. Circuit World has always been the definitive technical journal for those with an interest, from whatever perspective, in all aspects of circuit based interconnections. It is my intention to build on this strong foundation and to make Circuit World the preferred choice, both for those seeking to publish new work and for those seeking to be kept up to date with the latest developments. To achieve this aim, I will be assisted by a dedicated, revitalized and expanded editorial board comprising key industry and academic figures from around the world who, between them, have a vast array of experience in the key areas that this journal covers.
The demand for smaller, faster electronic products with more functionality has caused major changes throughout all of the electronics industry and this has led to radical changes in all aspects of circuit definition and interconnection at every level within a product. In the last few years we have seen conventional circuit board dimensions shrink to sizes approaching those that were once associated with the semiconductor industry. Increasingly, there is no longer one set of solutions for meeting all the circuit interconnection demands and the proliferation of high pin count, high frequency devices has led to the growing adoption of new solutions such as we are currently witnessing with the proliferation of the use of microvias. There are now many alternative routes for meeting the interconnect demands of the industry and we really are seeing a fragmentation of the once familiar technology to provide a growing range of solutions to particular problems. Which solutions, if any, will come to dominate over the next few years is open for debate but there is no doubt that the wide range of technologies currently being developed and used has brought new design, manufacturing, materials and reliability related issues to the fore.
We are also seeing the growing influence of environmental pressures on the industry and, whether through legislation or commercial incentives, major changes are taking place to ensure that the manufacture and use of electronics are as environmentally benign as possible. The ramifications for the circuit industry are significant since, amongst others things, we are witnessing a move away from lead in electronics assembly and bromine in laminates. These changes, whilst being difficult to implement in the short term, also offer significant opportunities. A wide range of new and replacement materials is emerging to meet the future needs of the PCB industry and, to assist in their adoption, it will be important to disseminate information on how they can be used and how they perform in specific applications. This is just one of the many important roles that this journal can play in helping the circuit industry to move forward.
It is my intention that Circuit World will continue to provide a central, authoritative and independent forum for the publication and exchange of information in all key areas relating to the provision of interconnection for packaged devices and modules. To a certain extent, there is something of a blurring of the traditional clear distinction between circuit boards and devices; we are seeing growing use of flip chip, direct chip attach, integration of discrete components (including into circuit boards) and thus the boundaries defining a circuit are becoming more diffuse. It is my aim to define a clear focus for Circuit World that retains emphasis on the traditional core technology, whilst embracing aspects of the new without stepping into areas already adequately covered by other journals. I would like regular readers of this journal to contact me if they have particular views on its content; I value your opinions and want to help make the publication meet your expectations. My e-mail address is email@example.com or you can call me on +44 2476 654557. I look forward to playing my part in making Circuit World a continuing success and in making it your journal of choice for up to date, high quality technical information.