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PACE Technologies Metallographic Preparation CLASS Chart icon

CLASS 4 - Soft, Brittle, Non-Metals (including Electronic components)
Examples include silicon, GaAs, ferrites, PZT’s, MEMS devices.

Description: Ceramic capacitors are an example of a Class 4 softer more brittle types of material. These materials are typically very small, inexpensive devices used in cell phones, MP3 players, computers and other electronic products. MLC devices are constructed of alternating layers of metal and ceramic, with the ceramic material acting as the dielectric.

Preparation Challenge: Microstructural analysis of a BaTiO3 ceramic capacitor includes looking for missing metal layers, as well as examining for gaps and voids in the ceramic substrate. Microstructural preparation of multi-layer BaTiO3 ceramic capacitors requires minimizing polishing relief and damage to the coating or ceramic substrate. This is accomplished by filling the existing voids with a castable resin under vacuum and then curing at a higher pressure. Initial grinding is required to open up the capacitor. The goal is to minimize microstructural damage at this step. Rough and final polishing are recommended on low napped woven polishing pads using diamond and colloidal silica, respectively.

CLASS 4 icon
CLASS 4 Soft Brittle Non-metals
Electronic Components
Silicon microeletronics
Metallographic micrograph of ceramic package

BeO substrates
Metallographic micrograph of BeO ceramic package

GaAs microeletronics
Metallographic micrograph of GaAs

AlN substrates
Metallographic image of AlN electronic package

Multilayer Ceramic capacitors
Metallographic micrograph of muli-layer barium titinate ceramic capacitor
Ferrites
Metallographic micrograph of Ni-Fe ferrite

Solder joints non-ceramic substrate
Metallographic micrograph of electronic solder joint


Solder joints ceramic substrate
Metallographic micrograph of electronic solder joint


MEMS Devices
MEMS Devices

PZT Devices
PZT Devices


Rare Earth Materials
Rare Earth's
Metallographic micrograph of neodymium rare earth alloy


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