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Electronics news

Metallized through-hole technology

Metallization is a process used in the manufacture of printed circuit boards where holes in the board are filled with a conductive material, usually copper, to provide electrical connections between the different layers of the board.

Because the PCB substrate material is insulating, the holes must be made conductive before copper can be applied to them. The traditional method is to catalyze the holes with a palladium catalyst and then apply electrolytic copper to them before thicker electroplating. Alternatively, additive plating can be used to apply a coating of the desired thickness.

Direct metallization techniques have become popular for double-sided and multilayer boards. The process eliminates the use of electrolytic copper plating by making the hole walls conductive using a palladium catalyst, carbon, or polymer conductive film, and then depositing copper by electroplating. This process eliminates the need for environmentally hazardous chemicals such as formaldehyde and EDTA, which are used in electrolytic copper plating solutions. Direct plating technology is more environmentally friendly and efficient than traditional plating methods.