CHANDLER, Ariz.--March 6, 2003--In order to better address increasing requirements for smaller mobile applications with higher functionality, Amkor Technology, Inc. (Nasdaq: AMKR) and Sharp Corporation agreed to unify the design for 3D System in Package assembly that enables the stacking of very thin packages. Targeting ASICs, DSPs and memories for the cell phone, PDA, digital still camera markets, the two companies will develop and enhance a standard industry stacked package format utilizing Amkor's stackable etCSP(TM) package and Sharp's package stacked CSP. The first proposal for the new package format, coined 3D-SiP, will be to standardize the terminal position of individual, stackable packages containing ASIC and memory devices.
This agreement creates a de facto standard for stacked packaging capabilities, with Sharp offering compact, high density products through its package-stacked CSP and Amkor offering its etCSP(TM) package for mobile applications like advanced cellular phones. Standardizing stacked packaging requirements gives developers of consumer electronics access to multi-source suppliers for their logic and memory devices. This is a clear advantage especially for those in the 3G cell phone market, where a broad range of functionality is possible within a limited area because of the flexibility in stacking a wide variety of devices.
"As the cellular phone market moves toward 3G, and mobile applications like PDAs combine networking and graphic processing capabilities, they will require multiple ASICs per device," stated Mike Steidl, Amkor's vice president for advanced product development. "Given the high cost of system-board real estate, packaging areas need significant reduction. Stacking complex memory devices on baseband ICs or ASICs eliminates the need for additional packaging area, even if another memory device is added for high-density memory."
Using the 3D-SiP format, individual packages can be stacked onto one another, making it easy to combine LSIs such as ASIC and memory devices. This new technology will help reduce development time of new devices because customers can utilize and stack the existing packages already qualified individually when a new product is developed. "Over the past twenty years, advancements in packaging density have concentrated on reducing package area," said Morihiro Kada, Sharp's general manager for packaging development department. "Sharp has been developing not only chip stacked CSPs but also stackable packages for such needs as high density board assembly. By using 3D-SiP, more complicated functions and higher density systems are available while maintaining device performance and reliability. By having access to a global standard in 3D-SiP design, end customers can benefit from the convenience in motherboard designing, and multi-sourcing components."
Amkor's etCSP(TM) package is the first ball grid array capable of an extremely thin 0.5 mm maximum mounted height. The design makes this package type ideal for PCMCIA card applications, mini disk drives, thin wireless handsets, Flash or EEPROM memory and other portable products where vertical height is limited. Because of the unique design of the etCSP(TM) package, stacking is easily achieved with proper substrate designs. This creates an opportunity to multiply memory capacity without increasing board area.
Amkor Technology, Inc. is the world's largest provider of contract
semiconductor assembly and test services. The company offers
semiconductor companies and electronics OEMs a complete set of
microelectronic design and manufacturing services. More information on
Amkor is available from the company's SEC filings and on Amkor's web