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Electronic and magnetic materials

Electronics reliability webinars

A new series of technical webinars in 2019

NPL is internationally recognised for its practical and innovative work on lead-free reliability, PCB interconnection failures, tin whisker migration and conformal coating research. These FREE online webinars provide the opportunity to draw on years of practical experience without leaving your desk. To participate, you need a phone line and Internet access. Please note that registration is essential.

The majority of webinars run for 60 minutes and each one is limited to 100 delegate/company registrations. A copy of each of the slides presented and links to NPL reports will be provided after the webinar. In preparation for the event and to ensure you are equipped to gain the maximum benefit, please read our simple Webinar Guidelines.


Effect of bias (up to 1000 V) on conductive anodic filament (CAF) failures of electronic circuits

Presented by Ling Zou Tuesday 16 July 2019 (14:30 hrs UK time) Book your place here

Achieving high reliability in service is the key issue in today's high-density electronic circuits. The voltage applied to the electronic circuit plays a very important role in electrochemical reliability. Insulation Resistance (IR) measurement has been widely used to predict and evaluate the reliability of electronic circuit. The test voltages for existing IR measurement are only up to 300 V. Trends for more electric vehicles mean that the measurements need to be conducted at significantly increased voltages to understand potential new failure mechanism when using voltages up to 1000 V. NPL has commissioned a 1000 V IR test facility. CAF formation inside PCBs is an important failure of the electronic circuit. Special-designed PCBs with CAF patterns of different via to via distances will be tested at different voltages up to 1000 V. 1000 V AC voltage will also be tested. The relationship between via to via distance and test voltage of CAF failure will be investigated.

 

Electrical and thermal material evaluation using power cycling testing for power electronic applications

Presented by Adam Lewis Tuesday 17 September 2019 (14:30 hrs UK time) Book your place here

There is an ongoing rapid growth in the market for electric and hybrid vehicles. As this technology develops, the operating voltage and current draw of these systems increase to meet end-user requirements. Both of these factors (the higher voltage and higher current) can lead to a range of failure mechanisms. It is important that the reliability of these systems is well understood and can be appropriately tested/investigated. In the near future this technology will move onto electric aircraft where reliability plays is a key consideration in the design.

At NPL, we have recently run a project investigation the electrical and thermal degradation of power modules, evaluating their performance from a materials aspect. We have developed our power cycling capability enabling us to heat power module systems at device level leading to local heating. Using active cooling, we are able to rapidly cycle the device temperature and accelerate lifetime testing to evaluate the performance of the electrical interconnects and the thermal interfaces in the device stack.


Evaluation of embedded electronics for use in harsh environments

Presented by Dan Flintoft Tuesday 1 October 2019 (14:30 hrs UK time) Book your place here

The ongoing trend of miniaturisation in the electronics industry has been focused on the reduction in size of components and component packaging. However, with an inevitable limit due to manufacturing capability, an alternative is required. Device embedded substrates are a promising solution which looks at miniaturisation from a substrate perspective, using a 3D approach to circuit design by placing components into the substrate as well as on the surface. This manufacturing method has been shown to increase circuit density, reduce signal paths, and reduce parasitic capacitances and inductances. Devices containing embedded components are already on the market but have yet to be evaluated fully for use in harsh environments.

NPL's work in this area, in collaboration with the University of Surrey, is looking at the reliability of embedded electronics to evaluate them for use within harsh environments through the creation of a test vehicle which was designed for testing of the reliability of the interconnect structures connecting the components. This is being achieved through the use of NPL's harsh environment test facilities. The ongoing testing, for example thermal cycling from –55 ºC to +125 ºC, will indicate the structure's suitability for use in harsh environments. Testing will also provide an insight into adaptations required in the standard testing parameters for industry.

 

Battery metrology at NPL – lithium ion cell characterisation

Presented by Kate Clayton Tuesday 12 November 2019 (14:30 hrs UK time) Book your place here

In 2017, the government announced the end to sales of new conventional petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2040 in order to reduce carbon emissions and the associated negative health effects from poor air quality. Electric vehicles (EVs) are expected to provide an alternative solution to the ban. However, increasing sales in EVs requires an improvement in consumer confidence. The government has announced to make over £600 million of funding available to support the uptake and manufacture of ultra low emission vehicles with an investment of £246 million to support the development of new battery technologies.

Research in battery technology is a growing area with lithium ion chemistry set to dominate the electric vehicle market in the short to medium term due to its high energy density and low self-discharge properties. However, the need for improvement is great with focus directed towards lowering cost, improving performance and increasing the safety of the battery. Success in these areas is expected to open a competitive market, improve consumer confidence and increase the uptake of EVs on the road. Battery metrology is a strategic focus for NPL and pivotal for the realisation of zero emission vehicles.

Register for this talk to hear about the facilities at NPL available for lithium ion battery metrology, our capability in this area with a focus on using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy to evaluate the battery system and the research that we have been doing upon nickel manganese cobalt (8:1:1) and graphite electrode materials.

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Past webinars