Terepac Corporation, an emerging leader in electronics miniaturization, packaging
and assembly, and IMEC, a
leading European research center in nanotechnology, announce their collaboration
on novel packaging technologies for flexible electronics. The initial driver
for this synergistic shared research relationship is a next generation wireless
ECG system, developed in the Human++ Program at Holst Centre, Eindhoven.
As electronic systems will become ubiquitous, the demand for innovative packaging
technologies increases. For many applications, like on-the-body devices, thin
and flexible form factors greatly improve the comfort of the wearer. In order
to allow large-scale manufacturing and market penetration, low-cost yet high
value solutions are key. Traditional electronics packaging and assembly with
rigid printed circuit boards and pick-and-place machines are unable to cope
with these demands.
The technology developed by Terepac holds great promise to give a unique answer
to the challenges mentioned above. In its patented photochemical printing process,
thinned silicon dies and passive components can be placed on flexible substrates
at speeds of more than one chip per second and with accuracies down to a few
The wireless ECG patch that is being developed in IMEC's Human++ program
at Holst Centre, an open-innovation initiative by IMEC and TNO, will be used
as a test vehicle for further development of Terepac's technology. For
IMEC it is an opportunity to go from a lab-scale assembly on polyimide carrier
to a more production-ready version of its wireless sensor nodes. First results
are expected by mid 2010.
Ric Asselstine, CEO of Terepac: "Following five years of development
by a team of world-class scientists and engineers and based on the patents of
co-founder and CTO Dr Jayna Sheats, Terepac is ready to completely transform
the landscape of small form factor electronic packaging. The company aims to
become a total solutions provider able to collaborate with companies up- and
downstream in the value chain. Apart from being on the forefront of technological
innovation, being able to tap into the existing partner network of IMEC and
Holst Centre is a great asset to our collaboration."
Julien Penders, Program Manager Body Area Networks at IMEC/Holst Centre: "Initial
contacts with Terepac were laid a few months ago. It quickly became clear that
their expertise would be a valuable addition to the existing competences that
we and our partners have on board. We look forward to further developing our
sensor technology and opening doors towards low-cost and large-scale manufacturing
for our existing partners or companies interested in this technology."