New glass bubbles for 5G, the newest member of its high-strength hollow glass bubbles product line, provides a unique, low-loss high speed high frequency (HSHF) resin additive for composite materials that designers use to build 5G devices and assemblies. The Glass Bubbles help designers enable products that can meet the rigorous transmission requirements and increased power demands that come with 5G implementation, while lowering the per volume cost of raw materials.

The Glass Bubbles for 5G help enable designers of HSHF copper clad laminate (CCL) to produce smooth, lightweight 5G substrates for building printed circuit boards (PCBs) – the building blocks for 5G wireless radio systems. They can also be used in plastic composites that a 5G signal transfers through, such as base station assemblies, radome shells, or even mobile phone cases. For further information see the IDTechEx report on 5G Small Cells 2021-2031: Technologies, Markets, Forecast.

Signal loss and interference have always been a factor in PCB manufacturing and will become more challenging as 5G networks operate at higher signal frequencies. Using The Glass Bubbles as a resin additive in the CCL helps control dielectric properties, allowing design engineers to reduce signal transmission loss at higher frequencies and improves signal reliability. The Glass Bubbles have one of the lowest dielectric constants of any known materials additive, making it attractive for the electronics industry.

“The Glass Bubbles have been used for more than 50 years and recent innovation has enabled the design of a bubble targeting the unique needs of 5G electronics. The new Glass Bubbles were designed specifically for 5G to help improve data transfer speeds in higher frequency applications,” said Brian Meyer, President of Advanced Materials Division. “They are committed to the 5G space, and we’re excited to apply our science where it matters most, collaborating on the low-loss materials needed to help designers with their higher speed wireless communications challenges now and in the future.”

Blending in Glass Bubbles for 5G HSHF CCL can also help designers lower their substrate materials costs by displacing typically higher cost resins. Further, lightweight Glass Bubbles occupy up to 20 times more space compared to the typical solid mineral fillers. Considering the cost per unit volume (instead of price per lb. or kg), The Glass Bubbles are a cost-effective choice in many applications.