It was poetically fitting that the IEMT Conference of 2018 was held in the Historic City of Melaka, having successfully made its presence felt in the other Historic City of Georgetown in 2016. Having hosted the event in 2010, Melaka embraced its Prodigal Conference’s return with open arms, welcoming delegates from around the world once again in what has become the flagship conference of IEEE Santa Clara.
Volunteers from three sectors: local multinational semiconductor companies such as Infineon Technologies, Intel, ON Semiconductor, Carsem, Atotech, Lumileds, NXP, STMicroelectronics and Tactilis, local universities Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) and Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) along with the semi-governmental body CREST (Collaborative Research in Engineering, Science & Technology), formed the organizing committee that would bring the conference to fruition. 15 months of hard-work, enabled by multi-party conferencing, sprinkled with a gamut of emotions ranging from anticipation to angst and disappointment to delight, overtly fueled by the desire to bring the best conference to the society (covertly driven by the fear of failure), culminated in the 3-day Conference held from 4th to 6th September 2018 at the Ramada Plaza Hotel in the heart of Melaka city.
Emcees Dr. Yew Hoong Wong, Bernard Lim and Jit-Shen Sim moderated the events in the main ballroom. The conference had the good fortune of witnessing 7 keynote speeches, each presented by renowned experts in their respective areas. The first two keynote addresses were delivered by Mr. Qin Deng (IBM) The AI Driven Manufacturing Transformation is Imminent and Ms. Claire Troadec (Yole Developpement) Automotive Industry Transformation: EV/HEV impact on Power Modules, Design Changes and Packaging innovations! Both keynote addresses showed key trends, challenges and opportunities for the semiconductor industry, keeping the audience engaged throughout the presentations. In the afternoon session, the 3rd Keynote address by Dr. Bill Chen (ASE) Heterogeneous Integration through SiP from Design to Manufacturing kept the audience equally engaged and this was no mean feat, considering that the keynote was given at 3pm, when bellies were full from the sumptuous lunch provided by the host hotel. The next three keynote addresses were presented in quick succession on the 3rd morning of the conference: Dr. NorAzmi Alias (CREST) Opportunities and Challenges for Semiconductor and Optoelectronic Packages in the Emerging Markets of 4th Industrial Revolution (4IR) focused on Digital Healthcare trends, Dr. Gaurang Choksi (Intel) Enabling Heterogeneous Packaging: A Perspective on Challenges & Opportunities focused on the multiple challenges in Heterogeneous Integration and Dr. Qian Wang (Tsinghua University) Growth of China’s Semiconductor Advanced Packaging – A Win-Win in a World-Wide Context opened our eyes towards the packaging industry in China. Rounding off the keynote addresses, the final keynote was presented in the evening by Mr. Alexander Mueller (Infineon) Packaging for Automotive: Challenges and Solutions, giving us a glimpse of the challenges facing the automotive packaging world.
Engineers are nurtured to take pride in sharing knowledge but it is human nature to compete among ourselves. No conference would be complete without some friendly competition. Judged by Prof. Nasir, Prof. Cheong, Dr. Poh-Leng Eu, Dr. Shutesh Krishnan and Mr. Hoo Kooi Lim (now you know who to thank/blame), the Best Poster was awarded to Dr. Lai Chun Yung (Infineon) for his paper entitled Investigation of the Solder Void Formation Mechanism After High Temperature Stress Process by 3D CT Scan and EDX Analysis. The Best Student Paper went to Yan-Cheng Liu, Hsien-Chie Cheng and Zong-Da Wu of Feng Chia University, Taiwan with the paper entitled Evaluation of Out-of-plane Deformation of Fan-out Wafer-level Packaging while the Best Industry Paper was awarded to Yung Hsiang Lee, Wei Keat Loh and Ian Chin of Intel with Electronic Packaging Moisture Interaction Study.
All good things have an end (except the sausage which has two) and so it was that the Conference ended after all lucky draw prizes were distributed. Not even the World Cup witnessed so many heartaches in this final session as many of lucky draw winners turned up unlucky, having left the conference early (you know who you are) thus disqualifying themselves from the prizes. After all the laughter and claps, it was time to bring down the curtains on IEMT2018, dubbed the best conference in Melaka, JB and some say Batam. Alas, the bitter-sweet moment of friends and acquaintances having to part ways after a successful conference came to pass but then again, there is always the next conference in two years’ time. See you in Putrajaya, Malaysia in 2020!