What’s Driving Substrate Shortages?

E. Jan Vardaman, President and Founder, TechSearch International, Inc. 

Unexpected demand, global supply chain uncertainty, accidents, and weather-related events have resulted in semiconductor shortages.  All types of substrates are in short supply; including substrates for chip scale packages (CSPs) and flip chip ball grid arrays (FC-BGAs).  Despite some capacity expansion over the next few years, and new plants planned to come online in 2024-25, the situation is not expected to improve for at least two to three years.  Some companies are considering substitutes that do not use substrates, including fan-out wafer level packages (FO-WLPs).  Layer count reduction in substrate designs with the adoption of RDL is also under consideration.

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