Amkor and Unitive Electronics sign licensing agreement for new flip chip wafer bumping technology ideal for communications

Microelectronics International

ISSN: 1356-5362

Article publication date: 1 August 2000




(2000), "Amkor and Unitive Electronics sign licensing agreement for new flip chip wafer bumping technology ideal for communications", Microelectronics International, Vol. 17 No. 2.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

Amkor and Unitive Electronics sign licensing agreement for new flip chip wafer bumping technology ideal for communications

Keywords Amkor Technology, Unitive, Licensing, Flip chip

Amkor Technology, Inc. and Unitive Advanced Semiconductor Packaging have signed a ten-year technology transfer and licensing agreement that will add electroplated wafer bumping capability to Amkor's recently announced internal wafer bumping manufacturing line planned for Korea.

The Unitive process for electroplated substrates is the latest key bump technology that Amkor has licensed for flip chip production this year. Amkor announced in March the addition of internal wafer bumping capability for its flip chip customers. The key elements of this agreement provide Amkor with a comprehensive set of flip chip solutions to support the growing demand for advanced packages.

Amkor now can offer its customers:

  • flip chip bumping for silicon, silicon germanium (SiGe), gallium arsenide (GaAs), and other non-silicon die technology;

  • a second source for solder bumping;

  • multi-level copper redistribution (MLCU);

  • wafer-level chip scale package (CSP) technology;

  • compatibility with copper integrated circuits;

  • fine pitch capability.

Driving the growth of flip chip technology is the increasing demand for high performance handheld applications, such as wireless communications devices, and high-speed network systems. This technology transfer agreement positions Amkor and Unitive to meet the growing demands of this market, as the use of higher bandwidth and higher speed telecommunications and wireless products increases. Unitive currently supplies this technology to Amkor through its North American facility.

"Unitive's technology broadens the range of advanced processes we can offer our customers", said Richard Groover, vice president of Flip Chip Technology for Amkor. "The Unitive technology allows us to address tighter pitches typical of newer die footprints and gives us a head start on the demands we foresee in the future."

"Amkor's selection of our technology for their new wafer bumping line in Korea is confirmation of the industry view that electroplating-based technology will enable flip chip packaging for more non-silicon and wireless applications", said Robert Lanzone, vice president of sales and marketing for Unitive. "Additionally, our ability to perform redistribution with copper in a single or multi-level scheme is considered an essential technology for this market. We can supplement Amkor's internal capability with our North American and Taiwan production lines to provide multi-sourcing", he said.

"Electroplating-based bumping processes are proven in the industry", said Bruce Freyman, Amkor corporate vice president for product operations. "The technology represents a solid foundation for development in fine-pitch bumping, varied solder compositions and wafer-level chip scale packages."

Electroplated solder deposition is widely used by leading industry original equipment manufacturers for advanced packaging applications. Unitive's technology meets stringent industry requirements for solder deposition control, bump uniformity, reliability and low-alpha processing. The technology also is extendible to 300 mm wafers.

Wafer bumping technology enables flip chip packaging that uses solder or other conductive balls attached to a die to form the connection between the die and the package. This alternative interconnect technology is used to replace wire bonding where high-speed, low-parasitic, or high-density die connections are required.

Redistribution capability allows the metal die bonding pads to be moved or redistributed over the surface of the die to allow more spacing between the wire connections, and to allow use of less expensive substrate materials.

Electroplated-based wafer bumps are compatible with emerging technologies such as copper ICs, new high speed GaAs devices and tighter spacing between die bonding pads seen on many new 0.25 um and 0.18 um devices. Groover said the addition of the Unitive technology, along with existing flip chip technologies, enables Amkor to fully support customers' emerging requirements. These include a wide range of applications, from low end wireless appliances to high end applications for sophisticated system on chip (SOC) and application specific integrated circuits (ASIC), networking and computing applications.

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