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IMAPS PDC Webinar Series on
Introduction to Multilayer Ceramics

This three-session on-line Professional Development Course (PDC) webinar was held:
Wednesdays, April 1, 8 and 15, 2009

All webinars were held 12:00 noon - 1:00 pm EST

IMAPS Members: $125 per webinar; 3-course series $250
Non-members: $200 per webinar; 3-course series $500 (Includes 1-year complimentary individual membership)

Registration Deadline: March 31, 2009

Key Words

Multilayer Ceramics, Low Temperature Cofired Ceramics (LTCC), High Temperature Cofired Ceramics (HTCC), Multilayer Substrate Design

Program Description

These 3 one-hour PDC lectures can be taken in total or separately depending on the experience level of the student and topics of interest.  The content of this course is derived from the presenters nearly twenty years of experience with this technology as well as an eight hour course that has been offered for more than five years at the IMAPS annual symposium, and the recent text on Multilayer Ceramics and related technologies (Handbook of Ceramic Interconnect Technology, F. Barlow & A. Elshabini editors, 2007, Marcel Dekker Inc., New York, NY.)

Below is a course outline for each session. These sessions are scheduled for 50 minutes of lecture followed by 10 minutes of Q&A.

Session 1 of 3: Wednesday, April 1-- 12:00-1:00 PM EDT

Multilayer ceramics based on High Temperature Cofired Ceramics (HTCC) or Low Temperature Cofired Ceramics (LTCC) is an enabling technology for a wide range of applications. The first of these three lectures will provide an introduction to multilayer ceramics including an overview, as well as a discussion of the benefits and limitations associated with these technologies. This session will assume no familiarity with the topic and will provide a basic working knowledge.

Some of the topics that will covered in this session include:

  • Fundamental concept associated with multilayer ceramics
  • The basic multilayer ceramic process
  • Material properties and guidelines for material selection based on application requirements
  • Basic Design principles

Session 2 of 3: Wednesday, April 8-- 12:00-1:00 PM EDT

The second part of this lecture series will focus on the process and equipment used to fabricate substrates from multilayer ceramics, with an emphasis on Low Temperature Cofired Ceramics (LTCC). However, these processes are also applicable to HTCC materials as well. Some of the key topics that will be discussed include:

  • A process overview of the steps used in a typical multilayer ceramics fabrication facility
  • Discussion of the individual process steps
    • Tape Handling
    • Via Formation
    • Screen Printing on Tape
    • Stacking
    • Lamination
    • Firing
    • Optical Inspection
  • Equipment used in each of these processes

Session 3 of 3: Wednesday, April 15-- 12:00-1:00 PM EDT

The third session in this lecture series will focus on the design of multilayer ceramic packages and substrates. Since this technology utilizes different processes that an engineer might be familiar with from a printed circuit board design, there are opportunities in ceramic designs that are difficult to achieve with other technologies. Some of the key topics that will be discussed include:

  • Design rules
  • Passive Component Design
    • Resistors
    • Capacitors / Inductors
  • Transmission line Structures
  • Shrinkage correction and control

Who Should Attend?

Engineers, managers, and technicians, who desire to expand their background or strengthen their understanding of the technology. The course will not assume any prerequisite background.


The course material was jointly developed by Professor Fred Barlow and Professor Aicha Elshabini, and will be presented by Dr. Barlow.

Fred Barlow earned a Bachelors of Science in Physics and Applied Physics from Emory University, a Master’s of Science in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech, and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech. Dr. Barlow has over 100 publication in the area of electronic packaging and is Co-Editor of The Handbook of Thin Film Technology (McGraw Hill, 1998) & Co-Editor of the Ceramic Interconnect Technology Handbook (CRC Press 2007). In addition, he has written several book chapters including two chapters on thin films and one on components and devices. He is currently an Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Idaho and serves as the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Microelectronics and Electronic Packaging.

Aicha Elshabini is a Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Idaho. She obtained a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering at Cairo University, a Masters in Electrical Engineering at University of Toledo, and a Ph.D. Degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Colorado. She served as a faculty member at Virginia Tech in the period 1979-1999, the position of Professor and Department Head for the Electrical Engineering Department at University of Arkansas (1999-2006), and Interim Department Head for Computer Science & Computer Engineering Department (2000-2003). She served as the faculty advisor for the IMAPS student program at both Virginia Tech and University of Arkansas institutions from 1980 to 2006. Elshabini is a Fellow of IEEE/CPMT Society (1993) a Fellow of IMAPS Society (1993). Dr. Elshabini was awarded the 1996 John A. Wagnon Jr., Technical Achievement Award from IMAPS. She has served as the Founding Editor of the IMAPS International Journal of Microcircuits & Electronic Packaging for 10 years.

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