Fundamentals of Microsystems Packaging

Microelectronics International

ISSN: 1356-5362

Article publication date: 1 April 2003




Willis, B. (2003), "Fundamentals of Microsystems Packaging", Microelectronics International, Vol. 20 No. 1.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2003, MCB UP Limited

Fundamentals of Microsystems Packaging

Fundamentals of Microsystems Packaging

Rao R. TummalaMcGraw Hill22 chapters, 923 pp., glossary, illustrations and photographs

Keywords: Packaging

It has been over 10 years since the first microelectronics packaging handbook from the pen of Rao Tummala was released and it still has a vast amount of very useful and relevant information. In 1997 the single book became three volumes or available as an interactive CD-ROM and remains in this reviewer’s top ten reference books.

Now Rao has produced “Fundamentals of Microsystems Packaging” with McGraw Hill which is aimed at new engineers and students alike, but is also aimed at a level to cater for a wider audience. It should prove ideal for students at Georgia Tech where Rao Tummala is now a Professor at the Institute.

The text covers each aspect of modern electronic assembly including materials, design, reliability, interconnection methods, wafer level packaging, optoelectronics and electrical test all packed into 923 pages. Chapter one starts with an overview on microsystems and the development of systems and their future. It features a section on who invented microsystems, in chronological order. I feel there may be disagreements on the order of companies credited but this is fascinating as an overview.

Printed boards are fundamental building blocks for products and many of the advances in board manufacture are a key to success of microsystems. The basic construction of boards is covered together with the advances in via technology and material construction. Each chapter in this book ends with a homework section of specific questions. Out of the 18 questions this reviewer had to look back through the chapter to answer two questions correctly.

The illustrations are very good with a fair range of photographs to support the text. More systems and product teardown photos would have been of value. This reviewer was fascinated by the use of good product photos and X-rays of commercial products in previous books written by the author. The addition of homework problems and suggested reading points to its intended student market. Any reader should not be put off by the suggestions of homework or a test of your knowledge; it is a valuable inclusion and checks how well the section has been read.

Environmental issues are covered in detail with a single chapter written by engineers from Japan and Ericsson with sections on flame retardant in printed boards, lead-free alloys for assembly interconnection and listing the key issues to the environment. Two Life-Cycle Assessments (LCA) case study examples are provided, one on the PCB and one on the mobile phone systems. The final conclusion of the debate is that we must all be encouraged to contribute to a better environment, making products more environmentally friendly will not stop random dumping that we all experience daily. It’s our world and we are all responsible for its ultimate fate.

Finally the book includes a glossary of terms which runs over 21 pages. Generally this complements the text as most uncommon words are defined in the main text and can be easily understood, even by those new to the industry.

This is a very good reference source and I look forward to seeing how well it does in the marketplace. It is ideal for people who are new to this fascinating area of microsystems. It is not detailed in any one area but an ideal addition to your company’s library.

Bob WillisSMART Group

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