Embedded Passives Technology (resistors and capacitors) with Bruce Mahler from Ohmega Technologies

July 10, 2018 Judy Warner

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Learn about Embedded Passives Technology with Bruce Mahler from Ohmega Technologies. OhmegaPly® embedded resistor-conductor material is popular, but it’s not new. Ohmega has been making this product since 1972. So why is it getting so much attention lately? It’s reliable and has stood the test of time for five decades--but emerging technologies are making it more relevant than ever. Tune in to learn more about embedded passive and embedded components and find out if it may be the key to solving your current PCB Design challenges.  



Show Highlights:

  • OhmegaPly® is a true thin-film, Nickel-Phosphorous (NiP) alloy. In the manufacturing process, about 0.05 to 1.00 microns of the alloy is electro-deposited onto the rough, or “tooth side”, of electrodeposited copper foil.
  • Embedded passive and embedded components: ER - Embedded resistors, EC - embedded capacitors
  • People tend to think of this technology as something new. Ohmega has been making this product since 1972. It’s the oldest, new technology out there.
  • Functionality - it can be used in so many different ways.
  • Mica - old copper clad laminator, conceived the technology as a way to add functionality to a copper material. Developed in early 70s as a new product.
  • First users of the technology - Cannon electronics in Japan saw the potential in the product for cameras.
  • Other early user was - Control Data Corporation. From there alot of mainframes utilizing the technology.
  • Ohmega ply - thin film resistive foil, plated process, nickel phosphorus, varied thickness and sheet resistivity, fractions of a micron-thick film. Very linear, as film deposit is thinner, resistivity goes up. Thin film technology.
  • We make it in Culver City, CA for 40+ years.
  • Work with Rogers/Arlon, Taconic, Isola, Nelco and other laminators
  • If you use a tiny discreet resistive element, they can be hard to handle. Etching a 5 or 10 mil trace is no problem.
  • Space restrictions, solution - print and etch a resistor
  • Why would I want to use Ohmega ply? What are the cost, reliability, performance indicators?  “There’s no other way I can design this unless I get rid of my resistors!”
  • Most designers use Ohmega ply for densification. Helps when: hard time routing, too many passives, board is a little too thick
  • Example: MEMs or Micro-Electro Mechanical System microphones for cell phones.
  • Applications: military, space based applications - satellites,
  • Uses include: Sensors, IOT, Wearables, Automotive, Memory, Heater, Biomedical
  • Ohmega wants to talk technology with PCB designers. Leverage their expertise, they operate as a part of your design team and happy to be a resource for you. Technical people are available to help.  
  • Ohmega and Oak Mitsui - technology partners - Ohmega/FaradFlex is a combined resistor/capacitor core consisting of OhmegaPly RCM laminated to Oak-Mitsui’s FaradFlex capacitive laminate materials.  
  • Printed circuit board copper lead times are getting longer
  • Self-reliant company
  • Very close relationships with raw material suppliers


Links and Resources:

Ohmega Technologies Website

Ohmega Technical Library and Tools

Ohmega Products

Bruce Mahler on Linkedin



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About the Author

Judy Warner

Judy Warner has held a unique variety of roles in the electronics industry since 1984. She has a deep background in PCB Manufacturing, RF and Microwave PCBs and Contract Manufacturing with a focus on Mil/Aero applications in technical sales and marketing. She has been a blogger, writer, contributor and journalist for several industry publications such as Microwave Journal, The PCB Magazine, The PCB Design Magazine, PDCF&A and IEEE Microwave Magazine and is an active member of multiple IPC Designers Council chapters. In March 2017, Warner became the Director of Community Engagement for Altium and was immediately tasked with the launch of Altium’s monthly On Track Newsletter. She was also instrumental in launching AltiumLive 2017: Annual PCB Design Summit in San Diego and Munich, a newly founded annual Altium User Conference. Her passion is providing resources, supporting and advocating for PCB Designers around the world and acting as brand ambassador for Altium.

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