New packaging technologies change LED supply chain

13th October 2014
Posted By : Mick Elliott
New packaging technologies change LED supply chain

The combination of cost reduction and advanced packaging technologies such as Flip Chip and Chip Scale Package, is changing the LED industry landscape, especially its supply chain, says Yole Developpement in an update to its technology and market analysis, LED Packaging Technology & Market Trends.

The new report highlights the impact of advanced packaging technologies in the LED industry. It says that the introduction of Chip Scale Package solution clearly reduces the number of manufacturing steps: today, some LED chip manufacturers, with Chip Scale Package technology already supply their products to the LED module makers directly. The report represents a comprehensive survey on recent trends regarding LED Packaging including Flip Chip LED, Chip Scale Package, and LED Filament Lamp. Flip Chip technology has step by step attracted attention from the lighting, backlighting and flash markets, becoming one the most important developing items this year. Following the LED TV crisis and with the entry of Chinese players, positioning has been reshuffled in the LED industry. The product quality of Chinese LED manufacturers has increased to a level where they are now real competitors for all players. In such a highly competitive environment, three major challenges lie ahead for the LED industry regarding the General Lighting market: efficacy improvement, cost decrease and colour consistency increase.

To answer these challenges, several players have now turned to Flip Chip (FC) LED, as these components present several advantages over traditional horizontal (MESA) and vertical LEDs: they are wire-bonding free, can be driven at higher current, and have a smaller size package.

And although the FC LED technology was launched some time ago by Lumileds, it was restricted from “popularisation” due to technical / technological barriers including low yield regarding bumping / eutectic proces. Additionally, the financial investment required for packaging equipment, represented a strong barrier in an industry that was still recovering.

But the technology has gradually attracted attention from the lighting, backlighting and flash markets, becoming one the most important developing items this year. Whereas Flip Chip LED represented only 11% of overall high power LED packaging in 2013, we expect this component to represent 34% by 2020. Flip Chip LED will take market share from vertical LED that will represent 27% of overall high power LED packages by 2020”, says Pars Mukish, Senior Market & Technology Analyst, LED, Lighting Technologies, Compound Semiconductors and OLEDs In addition to offering an increased “performance / cost” ratio, Flip Chip LEDs are also a key enabling technology for the development of Chip Scale Package (CSP) that could allow for further cost reduction.

CSPs are novel to the LED industry but they are the mainstay of the semiconductor industry. Development of CSPs in the Silicon ICs was driven by miniaturisation, improved thermal management, higher reliability, and simply the need to connect to an ever increasing pin-count on an ever shrinking die. Chip Scale packages also enabled a reduction in device parasitic and allowed for ease of integration into Level 2 packaging (e.g.: module packaging for LED). It is therefore a natural evolution for this packaging innovation to proliferate into other industries (such as the LED industry).


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