Difference between revisions of "Milestone-Proposal:Commercialization of Multi-Layer Ceramic Capacitors with Nickel electrode (Ni-MLCCs), 1982"

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m (Administrator1 moved page Milestone-Proposal:Commercialization of Multi-Layer Ceramic Capacitors with Nickel electrode (Ni-MLCCs), 1982. to [[Milestone-Proposal:Commercialization of Multi-Layer Ceramic Capacitors with Nickel electrode (Ni-MLCCs), 1...)
 
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|a11=Yes
 
|a11=Yes
 
|a3=1982
 
|a3=1982
|a1=Commercialization of Multi-Layer Ceramic Capacitors with Nickel electrode (Ni-MLCCs), 1982.
+
|a1=Commercialization of Multilayer Ceramic Capacitors with Nickel Electrodes (Ni-MLCCs), 1982.
|plaque citation=Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. released new Ni-MLCCs in 1982, and has since been the world’s leading manufacturer of Ni-MLCCs. Through innovations of capacitance enhancement, fabrication miniaturization, and cost reduction, the world annual production of Ni-MLCCs has risen to 3 trillion, due to their expanding utility in computer/network devices, home appliances, industrial equipment, and medical instruments. Now, Ni-MLCC is the key element indispensable to all electronics devices.
+
|plaque citation=Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. commercialized Ni-MLCCs in 1982, and became the world’s leading manufacturer. Innovations in capacitance enhancement, product miniaturization, and cost reduction, helped the annual worldwide production of Ni-MLCCs reach the level of 3 trillion. Ni-MLCCs' usefulness in computer/communication devices, industrial/medical equipment, and home appliances made Ni-MLCC vital elements in electronics components.
 +
 
 +
.
 +
 
 +
.
 
|a2b=IEEE Kansai Section
 
|a2b=IEEE Kansai Section
 
|IEEE units paying={{IEEE Organizational Unit Paying
 
|IEEE units paying={{IEEE Organizational Unit Paying
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|Proposer email=sirakawa@ai.u-hyogo.ac.jp
 
|Proposer email=sirakawa@ai.u-hyogo.ac.jp
 
}}
 
}}
|a4=The major historical significance of Murata’s commercialization of Ni-MLCCs is briefed as follows.
+
|a2a=1-10-1 Higashikotari, Nagaokakyo-shi, Kyoto, 617-8555 Japan ;  N 34.923900,  E 135.701899
+
|a7=corporate building: Head Office of Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
1.  Historical background of the birth of Ni-MLCCs:
+
|a8=Yes
The discovery of the barium titanate (BaTiO3) ceramics with high dielectric constant in 1944 and the advancement of the surface mount technology triggered the development of a series of multi-layer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs) with Pt (platinum), Pd (palladium), and Ag (silver)-Pd electrodes, which were used mainly for military and industrial purposes in the 1960s through the early 1970s. Although the MLCC with Ag-Pd electrode was the cheapest of all MLCCs in those days, the material prices of both Ag and Pd were skyrocketing due to the 1973 oil crisis, and hence a much cheaper base metal was thirsted to be substituted for the Ag-Pd alloy. Seeing that the necessary condition for a metal to be used for the internal electrode of MLCC was that it could be co-sintered with the dielectric material at low oxygen partial pressure, in 1974 Murata began to search for a new MLCC with a base metal electrode.
+
|mounting details=The plaque will be displayed in the grand floor builging of the Head Office of Murata.
 +
|a9=The plaque will be fixed on the wall of the main entrance of the Head Office, which can be accessible to the public with permission.
 +
|a10=Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
 +
|a4=The historical significance of Murata’s commercialization of Ni-MLCCs is briefed as follows.
 +
 
 +
1.  Historical background of Murata’s commercialization of Ni-MLCCs:
 +
 
 +
Presently, multilayer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs) are made of alternating layers of dielectric ceramics and metallic inner electrodes, whose capacitance density, together with those of the traditional monolayer disc/tube-type ceramic capacitors, has been changing as shown in Fig. 1. The annual worldwide production of MLCCs has reached the level of 3 trillion, most of which are produced with base metal electrodes (cf. mainly made of Ni [nickel]), because in comparison with the conventional noble metal electrodes (cf. mainly made of Pt [platinum], Pd [palladium], or Ag[silver]-Pd [i.e. Ag70Pd30 alloy]) cost savings can be greatly obtained, using much cheaper base metal electrodes in MLCCs [1, 2]. Recently the worldwide share of Murata’s Ni-MLCCs has reached 43%.
 +
 
 +
Historically, in addition to the discovery of the barium titanate (BaTiO3) ceramics in the middle 1940s, the progress of the surface mount technology triggered the development of a series of MLCCs in the late 1960s through the early 1970s. At this early stage the electrodes of MLCCs were made of noble metals, such as Pt, Pd, Ag-Pd, etc., since when heated in air they were hard to be oxidized and hence did not lose their electrical conductivities. Although the MLCCs with Ag-Pd electrodes were the cheapest of all MLCCs, the material prices of both Ag and Pd were skyrocketing due to the 1973 oil crisis, and hence it became evident that the utilization of much cheaper base metals of Ni for the electrodes would greatly reduce the production expenses of MLCCs.
 +
 
 +
However, there was a big drawback in using Ni for the electrodes, such that when co-fired with the dielectrics in air the Ni electrodes were oxidized and lost their electrical conductivity. Thus, in 1974 Murata intended to seek a solution for developing new dielectrics to compose MLCCs with Ni electrodes [3].
 +
 
 +
2.  Development of new MLCCs with BaTiO3-based dielectrics and Ni electrodes:
 +
 
 +
The remarkable progress of the surface mount technology accelerated the industrial demands for MLCCs with Ag-Pd electrodes in the early 1970s, for which the material pricess of both Ag and Pd soared sharply due to the 1973 oil crisis. Thus, in 1974 Murata focused on a cheaper base metals of Ni in substitution for the Ag-Pd electrode, and started the search for dielectrics to compose MLCCs with Ni electrodes. A major problem of using Ni for the electrodes was that the MLCCs had to be sintered in reducing atmospheres to protect Ni from oxidation. Although efforts to accomplish this substitution of Ni for Ag-Pd had been made for years, the first successful realization of the MLCCs with Ni electrodes at significant production rates was achieved by Murata in the early 1980s [2]. Specifically, it was found that the use of Ca-doped, BaTiO3-based dielectrics allowed the MLCCs to be sintered in reducing atmospheres compatible with Ni electrodes [2, 3, 4]. Confirming that the new dielectrics exhibited their excellent insulating property even if co-fired with Ni electrodes, in 1982 Murata embarked on the mass production of the new MLCCs with BaTiO3-based dielectrics and Ni electrodes, usually abbreviated to Ni-MLCCs [3].
 +
 
 +
3.  Achievements of the commercialization of new Ni-MLCCs:
 +
 
 +
Owing to the progress of both the surface mount technology and the miniaturization technology, in 1974 Murata initiated a diligent effort to reduce the dielectric/electrode thickness as well as to augment the number of layers, therefore the capacitance density, of Ni-MLCCs, and eventually achieved the quality improvement of Ni-MLCCs, as can be seen from Fig. 2. Thus, the industrial demands for these Ni-MLCCs grew so drastically that Murata attained the lead in the commercialization of Ni-MLCCs. Thanks to Murata’s outstanding achievements of developing the new Ni-MLCCs, Dr. Yukio Sakabe at Murata won the Fulrath Award from the American Ceramic Association in 1986, and Murata also received the Corporate Technical Achievement Award at the American Ceramic Association’s 100th Annual Meeting in 1998 [5].
 +
|a6=1. Obstacle to enhancing the capacitance density of Ni-MLCCs:
  
2.  Selection of Ni for electrode and development of new MLCCs:
+
The oil crisis in 1973 raised the prices of noble metals used for electrodes of MLCCs so radically that Murata had to seek a substitute for the electrodes. Murata soon focused on a much cheaper base metal of Ni to be used for the electrodes. Through persistent efforts spent for years, in the early 1980s Murata managed to find new Ca-doped, BaTiO3-based dielectrics to compose MLCCs with Ni electrodes [2], which gave birth to longed-for Ni-MLCCs. Through repeated attempts to improve their capacitance characteristics, Murata succeeded in enhancing the capacitance density of Ni-MLCCs as shown in Fig. 2. Eventually, in 1982 Murata could embark on the mass production of the new Ni-MLCCs,
Murata first focused on Ni (nickel) as a feasible candidate for the electrode of MLCC because of its extremely low price, and then tried to develop a dielectric material to compose MLCC with this Ni electrode, until in 1975 Murata successfully acquired the dielectrics made of BaTiO3 ceramics with its composition BaO partly displaced by CaO [1]. Through fabrication reformations [2, 3], Murata attained a newly-made dielectrics which exhibited excellent insulating properties even if co-sintered with the Ni electrode. Thus, in 1982 by adopting this dielectrics Murata could embark on the mass production, therefore the commercialization, of the new MLCCs with Ni electrode (Ni-MLCCs) [1, 4].
 
  
3Achievements of commercializing new Ni-MLCCs:
+
2.  Obstacle to maintaining the reliability:  
Noting that as compared with the material price of Ag-Pd alloy, that of Ni was almost 1/300 in the early 1980s, it turned out that Murata’s new Ni-MLCCs extremely reduced the fabrication cost. In addition, due to the progress of the miniaturization technology as well as the surface mount technology, the industrial demands for the Ni-MLCCs grew so drastically that Murata attained the global lead in the commercialization of Ni-MLCCs. Owing to Murata’s outstanding achievements of developing the new Ni-MLCCs, Mr. Y. Sakabe, a chief engineer at Murata, won the Fulrath Award from the American Ceramic Association in 1986, and Murata also received the Corporate Technical Achievement Award at the American Ceramic Association’s 100th Annual Meeting in 1998 [5].
 
|a6=1. Obstacle to improving the quality of Ni-MLCCs:
 
Even after Murata successfully found a useful dielectric material in 1975, there still remained the hard problem of how to enhance the capacitance of the new Ni-MLCC. To cope with this difficulty, Murata managed to increase the capacitance density of Ni-MLCC not only by reducing the dielectric/electrode thickness but also by augmenting the number of layers. Eventually, in 1982 Murata successfully embarked on the mass production of the new Ni-MLCCs [1, 4].
 
  
2. Obstacle to maintaining the reliability:
+
The first years of the industrialization of base metal electrodes were characterized by a severe quality crisis. In 1979 the US company Centralab (Milwaukee, USA) launched the manufacture of MLCCs with base metal electrodes, based on Mn[manganese]-acceptor doped (Ba,Ca)(Ti,Zr)O3. Production and sale of these MLCCs had to be stopped rather soon, due to disastrous degradation of the insulation resistance [1]. Motivated by this accident, Murata dedicated immense energy to developing more reliable MLCCs with base metal electrodes. Murata first focused on a base metal of Ni, and concentrated on developing MLCCs with Ni electrodes. Through vigorous efforts dedicated for years, Murata succeeded in developing the new MLCCs, whose BaTiO3-based dielectrics exhibited their excellent insulating property even if co-fired with Ni electrodes. Eventually, Murata’s new Ni-MLCCs could maintain all specific qualities over a validity period.
Centralab Inc. (Milwaukee, USA) released Ni-MLCCs in 1979, which unfortunately caused a fatal accident of deteriorating the insulation characteristics, resulting in the production stoppage [6]. Motivated by this incident, Murata concentrated much on developing more reliable Ni-MLCCs, until they successfully attained new Ni-MLCCs, in which the dielectrics exhibited excellent insulating properties even if co-fired with the Ni electrode. Thus Murata’s new Ni-MLCCs could maintain the reliable quality [5].
 
.
 
 
|a5=There are a number of distinctive features of Murata’s Ni-MLCCs as summarized below.  
 
|a5=There are a number of distinctive features of Murata’s Ni-MLCCs as summarized below.  
  
1. Unique device performances of the new Ni-MLCCs:
+
1. Distinctive properties of the new Ni-MLCCs:
Adopting Ni as the electrode of MLCC, Murata realized a much cheaper MLCC, as already stated. Through attempts of reducing the dielectric/electrode thickness as well as augmenting the number of layers, Murata managed to enhance the capacitance of the new Ni-MLCC [4, 5]. Thus Murata distinctively achieved not only the fabrication cost reduction but also the capacitance enhancement of Ni-MLCCs.
+
 
 +
Through persistent efforts to reduce the dielectric/electrode thickness as well as to enhance the capacitance density, Murata greatly improved the qualities of Ni-MLCCs as shown in Fig. 2 (e.g. the present capacitor sizes are ranging between 0.25x0.125x0.125 [mm] and 5.7x5.0x5.0 [mm]). Moreover, considering that the material price of Ni became less than 1/1000 of that of Ag-Pd in 2019, it can be seen that Murata has greatly contributed not only to enhancing the capacitance density but also to reducing the production expenses of Ni-MLCCs.
 +
 
 +
2.  Contribution to the miniaturization of electronic components:
 +
 
 +
Owing to consistent efforts to enhance the capacitance density as well as to save the production expenses, as stated above, Murata expanded the applicability of Ni-MLCCs extensively to industrial/medical use as well as deeply to commercial use, such as for home appliances, PCs, cameras, internet devices, mobile terminals, wearable devices, etc. Furthermore, noting that more than 1000 Ni-MLCCs have been incorporated even in a tiny smart phone, it may be safely acknowledged that Murata’s Ni-MLCCs have greatly contributed not only to the saving of fabrication expenses but also to the miniaturization of a great number of electronics components.
  
2. Contribution to social life:
+
3. Contribution to the growth of industrial demands:
The applications of Ni-MLCCs have been widely expanded not only for industrial and medical use but also for commercial use, such as for home appliances, PCs, cameras, wearable devices, mobile devices, etc. Now that more than 1000 Ni-MLCCs are embedded in only one smart phone, it can be seen that Ni-MLCCs have greatly contributed to the miniaturization and cost reduction of a tremendous number of mobile devices, and therefore to user’s convenience.
 
  
3. Contribution to market demands:
+
In 1979 the US company Centralab launched the manufacture of MLCCs with base metal electrodes, which caused a serious accident of disastrous degradation in the insulation resistance, resulting in the production stoppage [1]. In contrast with this company, Murata initiated a massive effort to carry out the project of developing new MLCCs with Ni electrodes, i.e. Ni-MLCCs, in which not only the reduction of the dielectric/electrode thickness but also the enhancement of the capacitance density was pursued to the full extent possible, as can be seen from Fig. 2. Thus, the industrial demands for these Ni-MLCCs grew to such an extent that an immense amount of Murata’s new Ni-MLCCs were embedded vastly in every possible variety of electronics components, until Murata has acquired the global lead in the commercializaation of Ni-MLCCs [5].
Centralab’s Ni-MLCCs released in 1979 caused a serious trouble of deteriorating the insulation characteristics [6], whereas Murata’s new Ni-MLCCs maintained the high qualities for a long period. Hence, the industrial demands for the Ni-MLCCs grew so drastically that a tremendous amount of Murata’s Ni-MLCCs are embedded extensively in electronics devices, until Murata has gained the global lead in the commercialization of Ni-MLCCs [5].
 
 
|references=References  
 
|references=References  
  
[1] Y. Sakabe, “Nickel electrode ceramic capacitor”, Electronic Semiconductor, vol. 7. pp. 37-42, 1987 (in Japanese).  
+
[1] D.F.K. Hennings, “Multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrodes”, in Proc. IEEE International Symp. on Applications of Ferroelectrics, pp. 135-138, 2000.
 +
 
 +
[2] D.M. Smith, “Multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrodes”, in Proc. IEEE International Symp. on Applications of Ferroelectrics, pp. 369-373, 2000.
  
[2] Japanese Patent, No. 53-24600, “Non-reducing dielectric ceramic composition”, March 7, 1978 (in Japanese).  
+
[3] Y. Sakabe, “Nickel electrode ceramic capacitors”, Electronic Ceramics, vol. 18, pp. 37-42, 1987 (in Japanese).  
  
[3] U.S. Patent, No. 4115493, “Method for making monolithic ceramic capacitor employing non-reducing dielectric ceramic composition” September 19, 1978.
+
[4] Y. Sakabe and H. Seno, “Method for making monolithic ceramic capacitor employing non-reducing dielectric ceramic composition”, U.S. Patent 4,115,493, September 19, 1978.
  
[4] D.M. Smith, “Multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrodes”, in Proc. IEEE International Symp. on Applications of Ferroelectrics, pp. 369-373, 2000.
+
[5] Y. Sakabe, “Development of the multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrodes”, Abstract Book, the American Ceramic Association Society’s 100th Annual Meeting & Exposition, vol. 43, 1998.
  
[5] Y. Sakabe, “Development of the multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrode”, Abstract Book, the American Ceramic Association Society’s 100th Annual Meeting & Exposition, vol. 49, 1998.
 
  
[6] D.F.K. Hennings, “Multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrodes”, Proc. IEEE International Symp. on Applications of Ferroelectrics, pp. 135-138, 2000.
+
Appendix
  
Appendix 1: Reference [1] was written in Japanese, for which English summaries are briefed as follows: Noting that as compared with the material prices of Pd and Ag-Pd electrodes, that of Ni was almost 1/700 and 1/300, respectively, in the early 1980s, it turned out that the MLCC with Ni electrode (Ni-MLCC) extremely reduced the fabrication cost. In addition, Murata managed to acquire the new dielectric material made of BaTi3 ceramics with its composition BaO partly displaced by CaO, with which the Ni electrode could be co-sintered. Thus, by adopting this dielectric material Murata successfully embarked on the mass production of the new Ni-MLCCs in 1982.
+
Reference [3] was written in Japanese, for which English summaries are briefed as follows:  
  
Appendix 2: Reference [2] was written in Japanese, for which English summaries are briefed as follows: This patent describes the details of the method of non-reducing dielectric ceramic composition, by which Murata’s new Ni-MLCCs could be commercialized.
+
Considering that as compared with the material prices of Pd and Ag-Pd electrodes of MLCCs, that of Ni electrode was almost 1/700 and 1/300, respectively, in the late 1970s, Murata was firmly convinced that MLCCs with Ni electrodes would extremely reduce the fabrication expenses of MLCCs. After persistent efforts had been made for years to develop new BaTiO3-based dielectrics to be co-fired with Ni electrodes, eventually in 1982 Murata succeeded in embarking on the mass production of the new MLCCs with Ni electrodes.
 
|supporting materials=[[Media:Proposal_of_MLCC'.pdf]]
 
|supporting materials=[[Media:Proposal_of_MLCC'.pdf]]
|submitted=No
+
|submitted=Yes
 
}}
 
}}

Latest revision as of 12:05, 1 November 2021


To see comments, or add a comment to this discussion, click here.

Docket #:2020-05

This proposal has been submitted for review.


To the proposer’s knowledge, is this achievement subject to litigation? No

Is the achievement you are proposing more than 25 years old? Yes

Is the achievement you are proposing within IEEE’s designated fields as defined by IEEE Bylaw I-104.11, namely: Engineering, Computer Sciences and Information Technology, Physical Sciences, Biological and Medical Sciences, Mathematics, Technical Communications, Education, Management, and Law and Policy. Yes

Did the achievement provide a meaningful benefit for humanity? Yes

Was it of at least regional importance? Yes

Has an IEEE Organizational Unit agreed to pay for the milestone plaque(s)? Yes

Has an IEEE Organizational Unit agreed to arrange the dedication ceremony? Yes

Has the IEEE Section in which the milestone is located agreed to take responsibility for the plaque after it is dedicated? Yes

Has the owner of the site agreed to have it designated as an IEEE Milestone? Yes


Year or range of years in which the achievement occurred:

1982

Title of the proposed milestone:

Commercialization of Multilayer Ceramic Capacitors with Nickel Electrodes (Ni-MLCCs), 1982.

Plaque citation summarizing the achievement and its significance:

Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. commercialized Ni-MLCCs in 1982, and became the world’s leading manufacturer. Innovations in capacitance enhancement, product miniaturization, and cost reduction, helped the annual worldwide production of Ni-MLCCs reach the level of 3 trillion. Ni-MLCCs' usefulness in computer/communication devices, industrial/medical equipment, and home appliances made Ni-MLCC vital elements in electronics components.

.

.

In what IEEE section(s) does it reside?

IEEE Kansai Section

IEEE Organizational Unit(s) which have agreed to sponsor the Milestone:

IEEE Organizational Unit(s) paying for milestone plaque(s):

Unit: Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
Senior Officer Name: Nagato Omori

IEEE Organizational Unit(s) arranging the dedication ceremony:

Unit: IEEE Kansai Section
Senior Officer Name: Toshiharu Sugie

IEEE section(s) monitoring the plaque(s):

IEEE Section: IEEE Kansai section
IEEE Section Chair name: Toshiharu Sugie

Milestone proposer(s):

Proposer name: Isao Shirakawa
Proposer email: Proposer's email masked to public

Please note: your email address and contact information will be masked on the website for privacy reasons. Only IEEE History Center Staff will be able to view the email address.

Street address(es) and GPS coordinates of the intended milestone plaque site(s):

1-10-1 Higashikotari, Nagaokakyo-shi, Kyoto, 617-8555 Japan ; N 34.923900, E 135.701899

Describe briefly the intended site(s) of the milestone plaque(s). The intended site(s) must have a direct connection with the achievement (e.g. where developed, invented, tested, demonstrated, installed, or operated, etc.). A museum where a device or example of the technology is displayed, or the university where the inventor studied, are not, in themselves, sufficient connection for a milestone plaque.

Please give the address(es) of the plaque site(s) (GPS coordinates if you have them). Also please give the details of the mounting, i.e. on the outside of the building, in the ground floor entrance hall, on a plinth on the grounds, etc. If visitors to the plaque site will need to go through security, or make an appointment, please give the contact information visitors will need. corporate building: Head Office of Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.

Are the original buildings extant?

Yes

Details of the plaque mounting:

The plaque will be displayed in the grand floor builging of the Head Office of Murata.

How is the site protected/secured, and in what ways is it accessible to the public?

The plaque will be fixed on the wall of the main entrance of the Head Office, which can be accessible to the public with permission.

Who is the present owner of the site(s)?

Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.

What is the historical significance of the work (its technological, scientific, or social importance)?

The historical significance of Murata’s commercialization of Ni-MLCCs is briefed as follows.

1. Historical background of Murata’s commercialization of Ni-MLCCs:

Presently, multilayer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs) are made of alternating layers of dielectric ceramics and metallic inner electrodes, whose capacitance density, together with those of the traditional monolayer disc/tube-type ceramic capacitors, has been changing as shown in Fig. 1. The annual worldwide production of MLCCs has reached the level of 3 trillion, most of which are produced with base metal electrodes (cf. mainly made of Ni [nickel]), because in comparison with the conventional noble metal electrodes (cf. mainly made of Pt [platinum], Pd [palladium], or Ag[silver]-Pd [i.e. Ag70Pd30 alloy]) cost savings can be greatly obtained, using much cheaper base metal electrodes in MLCCs [1, 2]. Recently the worldwide share of Murata’s Ni-MLCCs has reached 43%.

Historically, in addition to the discovery of the barium titanate (BaTiO3) ceramics in the middle 1940s, the progress of the surface mount technology triggered the development of a series of MLCCs in the late 1960s through the early 1970s. At this early stage the electrodes of MLCCs were made of noble metals, such as Pt, Pd, Ag-Pd, etc., since when heated in air they were hard to be oxidized and hence did not lose their electrical conductivities. Although the MLCCs with Ag-Pd electrodes were the cheapest of all MLCCs, the material prices of both Ag and Pd were skyrocketing due to the 1973 oil crisis, and hence it became evident that the utilization of much cheaper base metals of Ni for the electrodes would greatly reduce the production expenses of MLCCs.

However, there was a big drawback in using Ni for the electrodes, such that when co-fired with the dielectrics in air the Ni electrodes were oxidized and lost their electrical conductivity. Thus, in 1974 Murata intended to seek a solution for developing new dielectrics to compose MLCCs with Ni electrodes [3].

2. Development of new MLCCs with BaTiO3-based dielectrics and Ni electrodes:

The remarkable progress of the surface mount technology accelerated the industrial demands for MLCCs with Ag-Pd electrodes in the early 1970s, for which the material pricess of both Ag and Pd soared sharply due to the 1973 oil crisis. Thus, in 1974 Murata focused on a cheaper base metals of Ni in substitution for the Ag-Pd electrode, and started the search for dielectrics to compose MLCCs with Ni electrodes. A major problem of using Ni for the electrodes was that the MLCCs had to be sintered in reducing atmospheres to protect Ni from oxidation. Although efforts to accomplish this substitution of Ni for Ag-Pd had been made for years, the first successful realization of the MLCCs with Ni electrodes at significant production rates was achieved by Murata in the early 1980s [2]. Specifically, it was found that the use of Ca-doped, BaTiO3-based dielectrics allowed the MLCCs to be sintered in reducing atmospheres compatible with Ni electrodes [2, 3, 4]. Confirming that the new dielectrics exhibited their excellent insulating property even if co-fired with Ni electrodes, in 1982 Murata embarked on the mass production of the new MLCCs with BaTiO3-based dielectrics and Ni electrodes, usually abbreviated to Ni-MLCCs [3].

3. Achievements of the commercialization of new Ni-MLCCs:

Owing to the progress of both the surface mount technology and the miniaturization technology, in 1974 Murata initiated a diligent effort to reduce the dielectric/electrode thickness as well as to augment the number of layers, therefore the capacitance density, of Ni-MLCCs, and eventually achieved the quality improvement of Ni-MLCCs, as can be seen from Fig. 2. Thus, the industrial demands for these Ni-MLCCs grew so drastically that Murata attained the lead in the commercialization of Ni-MLCCs. Thanks to Murata’s outstanding achievements of developing the new Ni-MLCCs, Dr. Yukio Sakabe at Murata won the Fulrath Award from the American Ceramic Association in 1986, and Murata also received the Corporate Technical Achievement Award at the American Ceramic Association’s 100th Annual Meeting in 1998 [5].

What obstacles (technical, political, geographic) needed to be overcome?

1. Obstacle to enhancing the capacitance density of Ni-MLCCs:

The oil crisis in 1973 raised the prices of noble metals used for electrodes of MLCCs so radically that Murata had to seek a substitute for the electrodes. Murata soon focused on a much cheaper base metal of Ni to be used for the electrodes. Through persistent efforts spent for years, in the early 1980s Murata managed to find new Ca-doped, BaTiO3-based dielectrics to compose MLCCs with Ni electrodes [2], which gave birth to longed-for Ni-MLCCs. Through repeated attempts to improve their capacitance characteristics, Murata succeeded in enhancing the capacitance density of Ni-MLCCs as shown in Fig. 2. Eventually, in 1982 Murata could embark on the mass production of the new Ni-MLCCs,

2. Obstacle to maintaining the reliability:

The first years of the industrialization of base metal electrodes were characterized by a severe quality crisis. In 1979 the US company Centralab (Milwaukee, USA) launched the manufacture of MLCCs with base metal electrodes, based on Mn[manganese]-acceptor doped (Ba,Ca)(Ti,Zr)O3. Production and sale of these MLCCs had to be stopped rather soon, due to disastrous degradation of the insulation resistance [1]. Motivated by this accident, Murata dedicated immense energy to developing more reliable MLCCs with base metal electrodes. Murata first focused on a base metal of Ni, and concentrated on developing MLCCs with Ni electrodes. Through vigorous efforts dedicated for years, Murata succeeded in developing the new MLCCs, whose BaTiO3-based dielectrics exhibited their excellent insulating property even if co-fired with Ni electrodes. Eventually, Murata’s new Ni-MLCCs could maintain all specific qualities over a validity period.

What features set this work apart from similar achievements?

There are a number of distinctive features of Murata’s Ni-MLCCs as summarized below.

1. Distinctive properties of the new Ni-MLCCs:

Through persistent efforts to reduce the dielectric/electrode thickness as well as to enhance the capacitance density, Murata greatly improved the qualities of Ni-MLCCs as shown in Fig. 2 (e.g. the present capacitor sizes are ranging between 0.25x0.125x0.125 [mm] and 5.7x5.0x5.0 [mm]). Moreover, considering that the material price of Ni became less than 1/1000 of that of Ag-Pd in 2019, it can be seen that Murata has greatly contributed not only to enhancing the capacitance density but also to reducing the production expenses of Ni-MLCCs.

2. Contribution to the miniaturization of electronic components:

Owing to consistent efforts to enhance the capacitance density as well as to save the production expenses, as stated above, Murata expanded the applicability of Ni-MLCCs extensively to industrial/medical use as well as deeply to commercial use, such as for home appliances, PCs, cameras, internet devices, mobile terminals, wearable devices, etc. Furthermore, noting that more than 1000 Ni-MLCCs have been incorporated even in a tiny smart phone, it may be safely acknowledged that Murata’s Ni-MLCCs have greatly contributed not only to the saving of fabrication expenses but also to the miniaturization of a great number of electronics components.

3. Contribution to the growth of industrial demands:

In 1979 the US company Centralab launched the manufacture of MLCCs with base metal electrodes, which caused a serious accident of disastrous degradation in the insulation resistance, resulting in the production stoppage [1]. In contrast with this company, Murata initiated a massive effort to carry out the project of developing new MLCCs with Ni electrodes, i.e. Ni-MLCCs, in which not only the reduction of the dielectric/electrode thickness but also the enhancement of the capacitance density was pursued to the full extent possible, as can be seen from Fig. 2. Thus, the industrial demands for these Ni-MLCCs grew to such an extent that an immense amount of Murata’s new Ni-MLCCs were embedded vastly in every possible variety of electronics components, until Murata has acquired the global lead in the commercializaation of Ni-MLCCs [5].

Supporting texts and citations to establish the dates, location, and importance of the achievement: Minimum of five (5), but as many as needed to support the milestone, such as patents, contemporary newspaper articles, journal articles, or chapters in scholarly books. 'Scholarly' is defined as peer-reviewed, with references, and published. You must supply the texts or excerpts themselves, not just the references. At least one of the references must be from a scholarly book or journal article. All supporting materials must be in English, or accompanied by an English translation.

References

[1] D.F.K. Hennings, “Multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrodes”, in Proc. IEEE International Symp. on Applications of Ferroelectrics, pp. 135-138, 2000.

[2] D.M. Smith, “Multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrodes”, in Proc. IEEE International Symp. on Applications of Ferroelectrics, pp. 369-373, 2000.

[3] Y. Sakabe, “Nickel electrode ceramic capacitors”, Electronic Ceramics, vol. 18, pp. 37-42, 1987 (in Japanese).

[4] Y. Sakabe and H. Seno, “Method for making monolithic ceramic capacitor employing non-reducing dielectric ceramic composition”, U.S. Patent 4,115,493, September 19, 1978.

[5] Y. Sakabe, “Development of the multilayer ceramic capacitors with base metal electrodes”, Abstract Book, the American Ceramic Association Society’s 100th Annual Meeting & Exposition, vol. 43, 1998.


Appendix

Reference [3] was written in Japanese, for which English summaries are briefed as follows:

Considering that as compared with the material prices of Pd and Ag-Pd electrodes of MLCCs, that of Ni electrode was almost 1/700 and 1/300, respectively, in the late 1970s, Murata was firmly convinced that MLCCs with Ni electrodes would extremely reduce the fabrication expenses of MLCCs. After persistent efforts had been made for years to develop new BaTiO3-based dielectrics to be co-fired with Ni electrodes, eventually in 1982 Murata succeeded in embarking on the mass production of the new MLCCs with Ni electrodes.

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