23 January 2023
Filtronic buys automated wedge bonder for power semis, automotive power modules and industrial power hybrids
Filtronic plc of Sedgefield, County Durham, UK — which designs and manufactures RF, microwave and millimeter-wave (mmWave) components and subsystems — has further enhanced its hybrid and semiconductor packaging capabilities by investing in a fully automated wedge bonder suitable for power semiconductors, automotive power modules, and industrial power hybrids. The auto-wedge bonder improves capacity and adds volume process capabilities that will enable the firm to explore new markets. Filtronic says that the addition to its production line will allow it to offer greater that 1μm die bonding accuracy, improving production yields and delivering highly repeatable packaging solutions.
Bonding custom compound semiconductor die for high-reliability and system-critical applications requires precision and high levels of accuracy. Historically, Filtronic has used automated die attach and ball bonding but relied on highly trained operators to perform specialist wedge bonding operations. This approach has delivered high-quality products but constrained factory throughput and limited the applications served. The automated wedge bonder investment fully automates front-end assembly at Filtronic’s hybrid manufacturing facility, and delivers significantly faster bonding speed using a variety of wire diameters, from 0.5mil to 3mil. The wedge bonder will also be highly complementary to the specialist manual processes required for legacy applications.
“The automated wedge bonder further improves Filtronic’s agility, allowing us to introduce new products quicker than ever before, without compromising on quality,” says Marc Adamson, continuous improvement manager at Filtronic. “Our team of experts have trained to become specialists in the artisan skill of manual wire bonding, in some cases over several years. The introduction of the automated wedge bonder frees them up to work on alternative use cases, improving Filtronic’s agility across the entire business,” he adds.
“Filtronic is committed to investing in resources which allow us to consistently deliver volume production with pinpoint accuracy at high tolerances,” continues Adamson. “The introduction of this new piece of equipment is the next step in our long-term plan to continuously improve our service offering for customers.”