Rogers' Power Electronics Solutions (PES) group is introducing data matrix products codes on many of its metalized substrate materials, including curamik ceramic substrates along with power modules, housings and baseplates. Data matrix codes are essentially two-dimensional matrix codes consisting of black and white square cells arranged in square or rectangular patterns as a unique form of identification.
Rogers can add data matrix codes (DMCs) to a wide range of metalized substrates, including direct-bonded-copper and active-metal-brazed substrates. Codes, which can be text or numeric in form and encoded by code-reading camera systems, are written on metalized surfaces by means of a thin oxide layer formed by an optical laser system; no additional material is required on the substrate. In addition to bare copper surfaces, data matrix codes can be written on nickel (Ni), nickel/gold (Ni/Au), and silver (Ag) plated surfaces.
Standard data matrix code sizes are 2.3 × 2.3 mm and 3.0 × 3.0 mm, with other sizes available upon request. The single dot resolution is 0.164 × 0.164 mm. Positioning tolerance on a copper pad is ±0.3 mm. Using a data matrix code with 14 × 14 dots, for example, provides as many as 16 digits in a numeric code and 10 digits in an alphanumeric code.
These codes can be put to practical use for managing material lots. Data matrix codes can add tracking and security numbers to a master card or every single piece on a master card and can be used to register such details as the lot number or the date of production.