Why is the flexible FPC getting more thinner and 3D? This is related to the new 3C product configuration requirements.
Although the FPC has extreme thinning characteristics, while compared with the thickness of the rigid PCB, the flexible circuit board is much thinner, and the standard thickness is only 12 ~ 18μm. The purpose of using FPC: in addition to the flexible main board circuit can adapt to the terminal design of the configuration constraints, the FPC thickness specifications is also an important focus. The general common manufacturing method can satisfy the thinning requirements by processing copper foil;or making the electrolysis on the main board directly to achieve the ultimate thinness of the material, but the conventional thickness is about 12μm. There is also the micro-corrosion copper thinning process for the ultra-thin demands, can make FPC thinner, but can maintain the basic performance of conventional products, But the cost of the materials will increase relatively.
Another large trend is that there is the FPC products which can support three-dimensional configuration, we can make the three-dimensional configuration FPC to be wavy, spiral, concave and convex, curved surface type, and in the three-dimensional configuration condition, the 3D FPC only need to achieve the self-holding characteristics of the appearance, but also can be called low back force, that is, after three-dimensional of the flex PCB board shaped, it won’t be back into a flat shape even if the material is flexible itself, or there is the copper stress, this type of stereotype FPC material is even more superb.
The advantage of the three-dimensional configuration FPC is quite a lot, for example, set up the circuit in the robot arm, to meet the complex structure of the inner circuit and the layout of the joints of the robot arms by such kind of three-dimensional configuration. Also it is common to use for automated production equipment, medical equipment, Optical equipment, especially due to the special needs of any connection applications.
For environment protection, we not only have to pay attention to the processing of the FPC material which should meet environmental requirements.but also need to meet the product requirements of mechanical stress, heat resistance, chemical resistance and other product requirements. There is the Japanese FPC manufacturers introduced water-soluble PI products, higher than the general FPC environmental requirements, to provide electronic products manufacturers more environmentally friendly FPC program options. What about the acceptance of the new style of water-soluble PI application? The market will tell soon.