Isola materials support military LEO satellites

December 09, 2021 // By Jean-Pierre Joosting
Isola materials support military LEO satellites
Low-loss circuit materials support multilayer printed circuit boards for military- and commercial-grade LEO satellites.

Isola Group has announced its low-loss I-Tera® MT40 circuit materials supporting multilayer printed circuit boards (PCBs) for military- and commercial-grade low-Earth-orbit (LEO) satellites. The laminates and prepreg materials are suitable for high-density-interconnect (HDI) multilayer assemblies that must meet demanding military size, weight, and power (SWaP) requirements for LEO satellite payloads. The circuit materials are available in the form of I-Tera MT40 laminates and prepreg materials for high-speed-digital (HSD) circuit applications and I-Tera MT40 (RF/MW) laminates for high-frequency RF and microwave (MW) circuits through W-band frequencies.

Straightforward processing methods and manufacturing steps are used to fabricate single-, dual-, and multilayer circuits as well as HDI builds with I-TERA MT40 circuit materials in contrast to the complex and lengthy PCB fabrication processes required with other commonly used high-speed/high-frequency circuit materials such as PTFE. The ease of manufacturing reduces wear on machine tools, fabrication time, and assembly costs.

I-TERA MT40 (RF/MW) laminates maintain a dielectric constant (Dk) of 3.38, 3.45, 3.60, and 3.75 in the z-axis (thickness). The Dk remains stable over a wide temperature range, from -40 to +140°C. The laminates feature low loss at high frequencies, with a dissipation factor (Df) as low as 0.0028. They do not require any special thruhole treatments when forming multilayer circuits and HDIs, and support both HSD, RF/MW, and hybrid mixed-signal circuits. Laminates and prepregs are available in standard thicknesses and panel sizes, with standard copper weights of 0.5 to 2.0 ounces (and custom weights), with the light weight and durability required for critical military LEO satellite payloads.

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