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RO4000® Series

High Frequency Circuit Materials

RO4000® hydrocarbon ceramic laminates are designed to offer superior high frequency performance and low cost circuit fabrication. The result is a low loss material which can be fabricated using standard epoxy/glass (FR-4) processes offered at competitive prices.

The selection of laminates typically available to designers is significantly reduced once operational frequencies increase to 500 MHz and above. RO4000 material possesses the properties needed by designers of RF microwave circuits and matching networks and controlled impedance transmission lines. Low dielectric loss allows RO4000 series material to be used in many applications where higher operating frequencies limit the use of conventional circuit board laminates. The temperature coefficient of dielectric constant is among the lowest of any circuit board material (Chart 1), and the dielectric constant is stable over a broad frequency range (Chart 2). This makes it an ideal substrate for broadband applications.

RO4000 material’s thermal coefficient of expansion (CTE) provides several key benefits to the circuit designer. The expansion coefficient of RO4000 material is similar to that of copper which allows the material to exhibit excellent dimensional stability, a property needed for mixed dielectric multi-layer boards constructions. The low Z-axis CTE of RO4000 laminates provides reliable plated through-hole quality, even in severe thermal shock applications. RO4000 series material has a Tg of >280°C (536°F) so its expansion characteristics remain stable over the entire range of circuit processing temperatures.

RO4000 series laminates can easily be fabricated into printed circuit boards using standard FR-4 circuit board processing techniques. Unlike PTFE based high performance materials, RO4000 series laminates do not require specialized via preparation processes such as sodium etch. This material is a rigid, thermoset laminate that is capable of being processed by automated handling systems and scrubbing equipment used for copper surface preparation.

RO4003TM laminates are currently offered in various configurations utilizing both 1080 and 1674 glass fabric styles, with all configurations meeting the same laminate electrical performance specification. Specifically designed as a drop-in replacement for the RO4003CTM material, RO4350BTM laminates utilize RoHS compliant flame-retardant technology for applications requiring UL 94V-0 certification. These materials conform to the requirements of IPC- 4103, slash sheet /10 for RO4003C and /11 for RO4350B materials.

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