U.S. Government unveils new strategy for advanced packaging
EP&T MagazineElectronics Semiconductors Supply Chain chips CHIPS Act NAPMP semiconductors USA
IPC applauds $3B in CHIPS Act funding to support vital electronics technology
The U.S. Government’s announcement of a national strategy for “advanced packaging” under the CHIPS for America Program is a big step toward ensuring the resiliency and security of the U.S. supply chain for advanced electronics.
The recently released “Vision for the National Advanced Packaging Manufacturing Program” (NAPMP) by the U.S. Commerce Department, says approximately $3 billion will be used to drive U.S. leadership in advanced packaging, with an initial funding opportunity to be announced in early 2024.
IPC International Inc. has been the leading advocate for a “silicon-to-systems” approach to implementation of the CHIPS Act. A silicon-to-systems approach recognizes the importance of silicon fabrication, while underscoring the need for broader electronics manufacturing capabilities—including printed circuit board (pcb) fabrication and electronics assembly—to ensure that the U.S. can manufacture cutting edge technologies.
“Advanced packaging” today is driving semiconductor innovation by introducing greater electronic interconnection within semiconductor packages. Electronic interconnection is a capability that has been marginalized in the U.S. but is now key to U.S. semiconductor leadership.
“Indeed, advanced packaging is poised to play a major role in the development of chips for artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and medical applications, among many other next-generation technologies,” the Commerce Department stated earlier this year.
However, a 2021 IPC report found the U.S. has only just begun to invest in advanced packaging, while nations in Asia have sprinted ahead to develop the lion’s share of capabilities and capacity. The U.S. only accounts for 3% of global semiconductor packaging and lacks even state-of-the-practice capabilities.
IPC has documented that an ‘ecosystem’ approach covering several related electronics technologies is essential to achieving the goals of the CHIPS Act. For example, IPC believes the U.S. Government also must build up domestic capacity to produce advanced integrated-circuit (IC) substrates and printed circuit boards (PCBs).
“Bolstering chip production without commensurate growth in advanced packaging, pcb fabrication, and electronic assembly is likely to lengthen the supply chain and exacerbate glaring vulnerabilities in U.S. electronics manufacturing,” says Chris Mitchell, IPC VP of Global Government Relations.