With Rozalia Beica and Nancy Stoffel at ECTC 2016.

Whoa! Where did the time go? ECTC 2019 is only three weeks away and I haven’t written my annual preview post! This year’s event takes place at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, from May 28-31. I’m excited to announce that my good friend and SemiSister, Nancy Stoffel, General Electric Research is this year’s General Chair. I’d tell you about our escapades the last time ECTC was in Las Vegas. But you know what they say, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas…

What do you mean “back to basics?”

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not implying that the content presented at ECTC 2019 will not be leading edge. As always, you can expect the latest information on cutting edge advancements to ensure microelectronics and packaging will live up to its new-found fame as the antidote to the end of Moore’s Law. By “back to basics” I mean that rather than hyping market drivers like artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), 5G, autonomous vehicles and so on, this year’s special sessions focus on more foundational technologies underpinning these applications.

Autonomous Driving is Back

After taking a year off from the topic, Wednesday Evening’s plenary session, “Sensors and Packaging for Autonomous Driving”, chaired by Fraunhofer’s Tanja Braun, will address the challenges and demands for sensors and packages for autonomous driving along the value chain. If you been following the news lately, the autonomous vehicle industry has been taking a nose dive as reality sets in about unsolved issues – mostly to do with sensor technology. So, it’s clearly time for a look at what’s happening there.

5G Smartphone Requirements

When the smartphone market flattened, it relinquished its star application status as a conference topic to the sexier AI, IoT, and autonomous vehicles. But the era of 5G and 6G is expected to change all that. To learn about new requirements and the materials needed to meet them, don’t miss the IEEE EPS seminar, Roadmap of IC Packaging Materials to Meet Next-Generation Smartphone Performance Requirements. It takes place Thursday, May 30 at 8 pm.

Planning for the Future

We have a planet to save and continuing to produce electronic waste is not going to help us get there. To address this, on Tuesday at 10 am, W. Hong Yeo and Mikel Miller will chair a special session covering “Transient Electronics: A Green Revolution for Packaging.” They will discuss a new class of sensors and electronics that can degrade or vanish on command (either through externally triggered wireless signals or by “natural” degradation informed by the material properties and component designs).

Later that day 2 p.m., Rena Huang and Soon Jang will chair a session titled “Photonics on the Cutting-Edge of Technology Evolution.” This session will explain how advancements in photonics will provide solutions for emerging technologies like neuromorphic computing, quantum computing, and LiDAR for autonomous vehicles, as well as enabling heterogeneous integration.

The  EPS President’s Panel, Future (Visions) of Electronics Packaging, which takes place Tuesday evening at 7:45, will explore the future of packaging science and technology through proposed scenarios for 2025. In a new twist, no panelists have been announced for this session. Rather, the panel will be fielded by invited experts and authors of the best-selected submissions of the EPS packaging technology vision conquest. I’m really looking forward to this fresh new approach that includes young professionals, and I applaud the ECTC and iTherm committees for putting it together.

Lastly, Wednesday’s luncheon keynote speaker, John Rogers, Director of Center for Bio-Integrated Electronics, Northwestern University, will present a talk entitled Soft Electronic and Microfluidic Systems for the Skin, during which he will describe new material innovations that enable medical wearable devices designed to match human skin.

 Diversity and Inclusion

This year’s Women’s Panel, titled “Unleashing the Power of Diversity in the Workforce”, will discuss the power of diversity in a high-performing workplace, strategies to build a diverse workforce, and tools for inclusion and engagement. I’m happy to see this year’s panelists includes a MAN – Rolf Aschenbrenner, Fraunhofer IZM. Perhaps next year, we won’t have to refer to it as a Women’s Panel at all, but perhaps a Diversity and Inclusion Panel? 

Thanks to the Planning Committees

I’m wondering if everyone realizes how much work goes into planning and executing an event that will host 1400 attendees and feature 360 technical papers presented in thirty-six oral sessions and five interactive presentation sessions, in addition to six special sessions, not to mention some great networking receptions. I hadn’t thought about it until I looked through the photos from this year’s planning sessions posted here. The feature photo above comes from that. Thanks to the executive and planning committees for putting in countless hours of volunteer time to create such a robust program! More details are available here. 

Drop by the 3D InCites Table

Be sure to stop by the 3D InCites table on your way to the sessions, because we’ve got some exciting things planned. Pick up a copy of our first-ever print issue, 3D InCites: The First Decade. Meet Julia Goldstein, author of Material Value: More Sustainable, Less Wasteful Manufacturing of Everything from Cell Phones to Cleaning Products. We’ll also be promoting a few Wiley Books: The 4th Edition 3D Integration Handbook and Advances in Embedded and Wafer Level Packaging Technologies. Meet the editors and sign up for our eNL to get 20% off your next Wiley purchase.

Francoise von Trapp

They call me the “Queen of 3D” because I have been following the course of…

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