World premiere at Fakuma: Metal

Halle A7
Stand 7214
Press Release
World premiere at Fakuma: Metal-free MID technology
New compound: Laser produces electrically
conductive structures
Nuremberg/Germany, October 2008. – Global innovation in the form of
a new polypropylene (PP) based compound allows injection moulded
interconnect devices (MID) to be produced by an altogether new method
and much more simply than before. Invented by Peter Putsch, the new
compound provides the novel feature of a carbon-based conductivity
component that is already embedded in the ready-to-mould material. The
previously required metallization step is thus eliminated altogether, so that
MIDs can now be produced in just two manufacturing steps:
Step 1: The three-dimensional part is made by straightforward onecomponent injection moulding.
Step 2: The surface of the moulding is locally melted through selective
application of a laser beam; as a result, the conductivity component
becomes exposed. The part is thus processed into an interconnect
device carrying electrically conductive traces and/or areas of the
desired conductivity in any desired geometrical pattern.
For the lasering step, Bayerisches Laserzentrum (BLZ) at Erlangen has
already conducted successful trials with the laser systems habitually
employed in MID manufacturing. Any desired pattern, from narrow
pathways to larger conductive areas, can be produced. The electrical
resistance of the traces lies in the kiloohms range. The level of
conductivity increases with the intensity of the laser treatment. Conductive
and non-conductive areas are sharply separated, and their long-term
stability is ensured at temperatures up to the typical continuous operating
temperature of PP. Moreover, the conductive traces are insensitive to
mechanical loads and scratches. As a further processing method, the
technique referred to as Putsch Conductivity Writing (PCW) is currently
being tested.
Page 2 of 2 the Press Release:
„New compound: Laser produces electrically conductive structures“
At this year's Fakuma, Peter Putsch presents the new PP compound and
a range of sample MIDs made from this material at the booth of the
Polykum e.V. promotion cooperative in Hall A4, stand 7214. For the
purposes of further development and marketing of this metal-free MID
technology he has founded the pp-mid research enterprise based in
Rathsberg/Germany. The company cooperates closely with BLZ and with
the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg on a number of joint projects aimed
at process development and conductivity research. In addition,
prospective customers can order pre-fabricated specimen boards and
granular feedstock samples from pp-mid.
MIDs made from the new PP compounds are particularly well suited for
use in entertainment and communication electronics, e.g., membrane
keyboards and switches with low electric power ratings, but also for
equipotential bonding and screening applications. Apart from injection
moulding grades, development now extends to film manufacturing
compounds and enhanced conductivity formulas with the aim of
substituting metals, e.g., in making printed circuit boards and integrated
   
Further information:
Peter Putsch, pp-mid
Höhenweg 6, D-91080 Rathsberg/Germany
Phone: +49(0) 91 31/97 71 41, Fax: +49(0) 91 31/97 85 14
Editorial contact and voucher copies:
Dr. Diether Burkhardt, KONSENS Public Relations GmbH & Co. KG,
Hans-Kudlich-Straße 25, D-64823 Groß-Umstadt / Germany
Phone +49(0) 60 78/93 63-0, Fax: +49(0) 60 78/93 63-20
An innovative PP compound is the key to a metal-free MID technology
allowing moulded interconnect devices to be produced in only two
manufacturing steps.
Illustration: pp-mid, Rathsberg/Germany