High-Frequency Materials Group

image - Glaswafer mit planaren Teststrukturen für Materialcharakterisierung
Glass wafer with planar test structures for characterizing materials
Ein Paar von Split-Ring Resonatoren gekoppelt an eine Coplanar-Leitung
© Fraunhofer IZM
A pair of split-ring resonators, connected to a co-planar line

The HF Materials Group explores how materials interact with high-frequency waves, including established packaging materials like conventional circuit boards and extending to other materials not primarily meant for packaging, but used in the automotive or communication sectors. The real-world uses of these materials range from low-frequency wireless data transmission (e.g. WLAN or Bluetooth) to 5G and 6G communication, satellite communication, and automotive radar systems.

Our group continues to research and refine measuring techniques and methods for one of our focus areas: Determining the permittivity and dielectric loss tangent of different materials up to the THz range.

Beyond our commitment to refining the means and processes for materials characterization in the highest frequency ranges, we are exploring the impact of aging on dielectic properties in our quest to understand how the behaviour of systems as they age. These insights help find the design parameters for longer-lasting components and thereby contribute to more eco-friendly designs for electronic systems.

We are also testing novel meta-material concepts for use in HF system integration.

Our work covers a range of materials, including circuit boards, different synthetic materials (e.g. for mold or underfill uses, adhesives, or polymers in general), glass, ceramic, and others.


Cross-section of a metal planar resonator
Offener Resonator
© Fraunhofer IZM | Volker Mai
Open resonator for characterizing non-metal samples at up to 140 GHz
  • Measuring the dielectic properties (permittivity and loss factor) of different materials
  • Modelling, designing, laying out, and measuring planar resonators for characterizing metallized substrates
  • Characterizing materials across different temperature ranges
  • Determining the impact of humidity absorption on dielectric properties
  • Accelerated aging of materials
  • Advising on the selection of dielectric materials suited to the chosen application

Selected Projects