Advanced Technology Symposium Conference Proceedings


Author: Mitchell N. Gross
Company: FloMet LLC
Date Published: 6/11/2002   Conference: Advanced Technology Symposium

Abstract: Metal Injection Molded (MIM) boxes are displacing wrought metal boxes used in electronics and fiber optic packages. Although, the chemistry of wrought and MIM metal materials are equivalent, the structure of wrought and MIM metals are not the same. For example, there is a difference in the pore size distribution of MIM and wrought parts. The difference in structure between wrought and MIM metals are intrinsic to the process to produce the metals and parts. One key property is the hermeticity of the electronics or fiber optic package. It is the measure of the quality of the package seal. Hermeticity is usually tested after the leads have been assembled into the box.

Lead assembly could include glass sealing and/or brazing of the leads, gold plating of the box, and surface grinding of the box. However, there is a lack of information on the hermeticity of the MIM material. This information is necessary for industry use of MIM metals and parts. The research examined the hermeticity of MIM boxes produced from 316L stainless steel, 49% Nickel-Iron, and ASTM F- 15. Furthermore, limited testing was conducted on packages that were gold plated, machined, and glass sealed prior to hermeticity testing. In all cases, the hermeticity of the box were better than the industry standard. Therefore, MIM can be used to produce the box, a cost savings of 60% or greater can be realized.

Keywords: MIM, Hermeticity, Metal Injection Molding, Leak Rate, Box, Package.

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