Functional Components

Functional Modules with Passives and Active Integration Vision and Strategy

The vision of functional components program is to demonstrate next-generation power and RF components and modules with simultaneous improvements in electrical performance, miniaturization, reduced cost and reliability at component and module levels for applications ranging from smartphones, wireless sensors, IoTs, and automotive applications. This will be accomplished by: 1) performance enhancement of functional components with better properties, 2) miniaturization in X-Y and Z directions, and 3) integration with actives to form ultra-miniaturized modules. A variety of advanced passive component technologies are being developed, including filters, diplexers, matching networks, EMI shields, antennas and thermal structures for RF; and high-density capacitors, high-density inductors, inductive links, transformers, and EMI filters for power. These advanced passives are integrated with actives to demonstrate functional modules such as power converters, LTE diversity and WLAN modules. 

The component advances are proposed to be achieved with advanced design concepts that benefit from thinfilms having superior material properties, are double-side integrated on glass connected with ultra-short through-vias, deposited, fabricated with low-cost, panel scalable processes. Two new concepts being pioneered by GT PRC—3D IPD for integration of passives and 3D IPAC for integration of both actives and passives are illustrated below. The 3D IPAC concept, illustrated consists of:

  • Ultrathin substrate ~ 30-100µm in thickness
  • Made of glass with the ultra-low electrical loss, low dielectric constant and ultra-high resistivity
  • Fabricated with ultra-short through-package Cu vias, similar to TSVs in Si, for double-sided assembly of active and passive components, separated by only about 30-100 µm in interconnection length
  • Interconnected with ultra-thin actives and passives either by assembly or by embedding
  • Interconnected by ultra-short and low-temperature Cu-Cu interconnections
  • Integrated with thermal and shielding structures , as needed
  • Low cost, enabled by very large panel area processing, 510 mm, of glass substrate and panel assembly

3D IPD and 3D IPAC concepts benchmarked with current component and module technologies.

RF Component Research Focus

The key building blocks being explored and developed are high-Q passives, embedded matching networks, diplexers, thermal structures for power amplifier (PA) cooling, and EMI shield.  

Power Component Research Focus

The key building blocks for enhancing performance with miniaturization in future smart systems include capacitors, inductors and wireless power components such as inductive link, EMI shield and EMI filters.

For more information about Functional Components Research at GT PRC, please contact Dr. Raj Pulugurtha, Program Manager at raj.pulugurtha@prc.gatech.edu.