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Understanding Moisture Ingress into Cavity Style Teflon Laminate Packages
Keywords: Near Hermetic, Hermeticity, Copper clad teflon laminates
This presentation summarizes work conducted at Merrimac Industries to understand, quantify and model moisture ingress into and out of cavity style packages made from fusion bonded copper clad teflon laminates. Hermeticity testing as defined per MIL-STD-883 TM 1014 and the associated RGA 1018 requirement do not work for 'near hermetic' organic based packaging materials. The mechanism for ingress of moisture and contaminants into organic-based materials is markedly different than that for non-organic materials. Test data collected from buried moisture sensors will show actual moisture build up in a both a hermetic and 'near hermetic' package vs. theoretical predictions. The 'hermeticity paradigm' and associated hermeticity test methods must be revised to address moisture permeation into cavity style polymer based packages. Direct knowledge of moisture ingress into 'near hermetic' packages is possible using in situ moisture/temperature sensors and thin film triple track moisture condensation sensors operating along side functioning RF/MMIC circuitry. This information combined with classical moisture diffusivity testing and theoretical modeling will finally provide the technical data on which to base future packaging design decision and material choices. A new approach for assessing the reliability of 'near-hermetic' parts is then possible.
Bud Osthaus, Fellow Engineer
Merrimac Industries
West Caldwell, NJ

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