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Design News, February 2013

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Medical As device manufacturers face the pressures of faster prototyping, quick changeovers, and the increased use of automation, the advantages of PSAs as an alternative material choice for interconnects, grounding, and shielding applications traditionally dominated by labor-intensive soldering operations, are becoming more evident. Device Manufacturers Embrace Electrically Conductive Adhesives As the trend toward more compact, higher functioning devices continues to evolve, electrically conductive adhesives are proving to be key components in the manufacturing process, combining bonding performance with the added benefit of conductivity. By Deepak Hariharan, Brian Harkins, and Benjamin Wagner, Adhesives Research Inc. A dvancements in electronics technology are bridging the gap from consumer products to medical devices in the form of medical electronic equipment designed for faster diagnosis, improvement of patient quality of life, and new drug-based therapies. One trend is the movement toward compact and portable patient monitoring, display, and testing equipment that is more accurate and versatile for improved bedside treatment. Such equipment includes blood glucose monitoring systems, insulin pumps, defibrillators, and neurological stimulators. Implantable devices are also incorporating the latest technological [w w w. desi g n n e w s . c o m ] advancements for sophisticated and targeted therapies ranging from drug delivery and pain management to the treatment of neurological disorders. As electronic devices become increasingly smaller, portable, and more complex, reducing the size of component real estate to enhance product design and functionality is becoming more important. To meet the demand, device manufacturers have readily embraced pressure-sensitive adhesives (PSAs) for their functionality and ease-of-use in both medical and electronic device assembly. PSAs feature an adhesive coated onto a continuous web of a substrate material — in either F E B RU A RY 2013 ME DICAL / A S UP P LE ME NT TO DE S IGN NE W S M1

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