System in a Package (SiP)

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System in a Package (SiP) technology was designed for multiple advanced packaging applications to create solutions that can be customized depending on the need of the user. A system-in-a-package (or system in package) is a number of integrated circuits enclosed in a single package or module.

No two customers are alike. There are differences in microelectronic challenges as well as differences in concepts and desired end results.

  • Lower cost of ownership (due to more efficient ICs and multiple ICs in one package)
  • Reduced cycle times for system design  
  • Higher levels of integration
  • Smaller size with increased functionality (compared to individually packaged ICs)
  • Greater flexibility in product development

Applications for System in a Package:

  • RF Wireless Modules
  • High-Power Communication Devices
  • High-Density Single Module Computers
  • Portable Electronics
  • Military and Space Avionics
  • Power Amplifiers
  • LED Packages
  • Servers
  • Wearable Computers

How it Works
The SiP performs all or most of the functions of an electronic system. Dies containing integrated circuits may be stacked vertically on a substrate. They are internally connected by fine wires that are bonded to the package. Alternatively, with a flip chip technology, solder or gold ball bumps are used to join stacked chips together. SiP dies are stacked vertically, unlike slightly less dense multi-chip modules, which place dies horizontally alongside one another. SiP connects the dies with standard wire bonds or solder bumps, unlike slightly denser three-dimensional integrated circuits which connect stacked silicon dies with conductors running through the die utilizing “through silicon vias” (TSV).

An example SiP can contain several chips—such as a specialized processor, DRAM, flash memory—combined with passive components—resistors and capacitors—all mounted on the same substrate. This means that a complete, functional unit can be built in a multi-chip module so that few external components need to be added to make it work. This is particularly valuable in space-constrained environments as it reduces the complexity of the printed circuit board and overall design.

SiP Chip Stacked MCM

System in a Package is now breaking into a related application called Chip Stack MCM. Chip Stack MCM is also commonly referred to as a "chip stack package" and is a new development in MCM technology. Well designed substrates allow die to be stacked in a vertical configuration making the MCM's footprint much smaller. The trade off is that the chip becomes thicker (or taller). Devices that utilize this are ones that require high power in a small area, such as miniature electronics.