With 005005 components (metric 0201) scheduled for production within two years, it becomes less attractive to place and solder what are truly microminiature parts using traditional means.
Robert Barbucha, a researcher at the Institute of Fluid-Flow Machinery Center’s Plasma and Laser Engineering in Gda?sk, Poland, is working on a laser device that may solve the problem. His method involves using lasers to project pathways on printed circuit boards covered with a layer of photopolymer. The concept isn’t novel — many engineers have suggested printing or lasering parts on boards — but in this case the laser itself is the focus of Barbucha’s research. He reportedly has begun working with a manufacturer in Gda?sk to produce a prototype.