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In recent years, the technology of printing copper conductive paste has received attention as an alternative to conventional silver (Ag) filled ICAs and inks for the fabrication of printed electronics. Copper is expected to be a suitable filler because it has high conductivity, stability and resistance to migration, and can significantly reduce the cost of circuit fabrication due to its lower price and less dependency on raw materials.
Currently, the conductive paste is applied to an insulator such as a ceramic by screen printing or direct drawing and fired to form a copper conductor pattern. Since the paste does not have a sufficient diffusion driving force when firing, a sufficiently dense copper film cannot be obtained. In addition, because the adhesive strength of the conductor to the insulator decreases after heat aging, there is a concern that reliability may be poor.
To solve these problems, the present invention provides a copper conductive paste to which a glass frit is added in order to improve its adhesive strength to a substrate after coating and firing. The glass frit can be selected from various known glass products such as borosilicate-based or zinc borosilicate-based glass.
The conductive paste of the present invention comprises a mixture of copper powder and/or copper oxide powder dispersed in an organic vehicle. The organic vehicle comprises a resin whose thermal decomposition temperature in nitrogen is in the range of 200 to 350 °C. The copper conductive paste of the present invention can be used to fabricate functional circuits by printing a pattern and placing surface mount components into it.