Intelligent miniaturization of ESD protection

Featured Product from Nexperia B.V.

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When looking for the 'ideal' ESD protection solution for high-speed lines, there are a three main challenges - signal integrirty, system-level ESD robustness and footprint. Addressing signal integrity, we need an ESD protection device with low capacitance but also low inductance, which is quite often overlooked. While from a system-level ESD robustness perspective, a low clamping voltage is becoming more important than robustness of the ESD protection device itself. Although surge robustness of the protection device has once again become important due to potential fault conditions, where data lines might be shorted with supply lines. Nexperia addresses both these challenges by using advanced TrEOS silicon technology and advanced packages derived from Wafer-Level Chip-Scale Packaging (WL-CSP) technology.

But what is the best way to reduce the footprint demand of ESD protection? An obvious approach is by simply shrinking the package size. Metric 0603 packages (0201”) are now the accepted standard for the mobile industry and are rapidly becoming the standard in computing.

The smaller 0402 metric (01005”) is already being used in applications where space demand is most stringent. And due to the RF demands of USB4 data lines and parameters like Return Loss becoming important, with narrower solder pads a move from 0603 to 0402 will offer lower Return Loss when comparing the same diodes in this package. However, these smaller packages does placing higher demands on assembly technologies.

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