A series of Multilayer Ceramic Capacitors (MLCCs) for medical applications has been released by AVX Corporation. Designed for use in medical devices that require significantly less parametric flexibility than commercial capacitors offer, but stop short of demanding the stringent features of fully qualified medical capacitors.
The MM Series MLCCs provide medical device manufacturers with consistent, cost-competitive solutions that have the design and change controls necessary to achieve FDA approvals. To further mitigate the risks already addressed by the defined designs, materials, processes, and manufacturing facilities regulated by medical design and change controls, MM Series MLCCs also undergo internal reliability qualification, enhanced Lot Acceptance Testing (LAT), and 100% inspection. Available in NP0 (C0G) and X7R dielectrics, eight case sizes spanning 0402 to 2220, eight rated voltages spanning 10–500V, and capacitance values spanning 0.5–1.5μF, MM Series MLCCs are suitable for use in a range of medical devices, aside from those that are both implantable and life supporting, including: implantable, non-life-sustaining medical devices, such as insulin pumps and temporary implantable cardiac monitors; external, life-sustaining medical devices, such as external controllers for heart pumps; and strictly external medical devices, such as patient monitoring and diagnostic equipment.
“Our new MM Series MLCCs provide medical device engineers with exceptional reliability and design flexibility at a competitive price point, eliminating both the inherent risks of using commercial capacitors in these devices and the expense of specifying fully qualified medical capacitors in applications that don’t demand them,” said Lizzie Geismar, Product Manager, AVX. “As an industry-leading developer and supplier of medical MLCCs, with a long history of providing advanced design, manufacturing, testing, and qualification services for the medical industry, we’re proud to offer our medical customers a new range of products that, through their excellent price/performance ratio, will enable the next-gen of electronic medical devices.”
Unlike commercial MLCCs, MM Series MLCCs for medical applications feature specific series part numbers to control product supply. With regard to design and dicing, MM Series MLCCs have a minimum ceramic thickness of 0.029” (vs. 0.020” for AVX X7R products), 0.004” minimum side and end margins (vs. 0.003”), and cover layers measuring a minimum of 0.003”. Additionally, many more MM Series parts are subjected to lot qualification Destructive Physical Analysis (DPA) than are recommended by the EIA RS469 document, and all tested parts are held to significantly stricter criteria. The series also undergoes 100% inspection for visual and cosmetic quality (vs. standard process and inspection), and is not only subjected to increased sampling for accelerated wave solder on X7R and NP0 dielectrics (vs. standard sampling for X7R dielectrics), but also subjected to lot-by-lot reliability testing. Further, as required by medical design and change controls, AVX will qualify and notify customers before making any changes to the following MM Series materials or processes: dielectric, metal, and termination material formulation, type, or supplier; manufacturing equipment type; and quality testing regime, including sample size and accept/reject criteria, rather than simply informing them should the form, fit, or function of the devices change.