High-Frequency Feature Drives PCB Materials Market
he development of new materials for printed circuit boards (PCBs) that are compatible with the fifth-generation (5G) communication standard and high-frequency bands, such as millimeter wave (mmWave) band, has been gathering momentum. Chemical materials manufacturers, including manufacturers of copper-clad laminates (CCL), have commercialized new PCB materials one after another. Products using new materials that are suitable for high-speed transmission in high-frequency bands have emerged; and move to bring them to mass production will accelerate in the coming months.
Potential for Steady Growth
According to a survey by the Japan Electronics Packaging and Circuits Association (JPCA), the global production of circuit board materials by Japanese companies in 2019 decreased 1.3 percent from the previous year and their global production in 2020 is forecast to increase 5.6 percent from the previous year. However, as the survey was conducted before the outbreak of COVID-19 infections, it is presumed that actual production will decrease.
Under these circumstances, solid growth can be expected for high-frequency substrate materials. 5G features high speed, large capacity, low signal latency, and simultaneous connection of multiple terminals. Services using mmWave bands, including mmWave radars, are also expected to expand in the coming years. For these reasons, high-frequency-compatible PCBs are required for base stations and various terminals, and copper-clad laminates (CCL) that feature low dielectric constant, low dissipation factor, low transmission loss, and excellent high-speed transmission property are needed.