Product Overview

Today, over 600 of these direct metallization lines are in production around the world. These technologies offer customers lower water usage, less waste generation, smaller equipment footprints, and palladium-free activation for significant operations savings. At the forefront, Blackhole LE and Eclipse LE, our low etch direct metallization technologies, are enabling the latest generation of mobile designs with fine line width and spacing through mSAP on 3-micron copper foil.

Product Features

  • Suite of carbon, graphite, and conductive polymer alternatives to electroless copper
  • Significantly reduced carbon footprint helps offset carbon costs associated with manufacturing
  • Elimination of palladium metal from activation
  • Quicker processing time, lower water usage and fewer metal interfaces

Blackhole LE and Eclipse LE, our low etch direct metallization technologies, are enabling the latest generation of mobile designs with fine line width and spacing through mSAP on 3-micron copper foil.

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Blackhole Sales Sheet (EN)

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Blackhole LE Sales Sheet (EN)

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Eclipse Sales Sheet (EN)

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Eclipse LE Sales Sheet (EN)

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Microvia Reliability Brochure (EN)

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Shadow Sales Sheet (EN)

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Direct Metallization System for Flexible Printed Circuit Board Technical Publication SMTAI 2015 (EN)

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Green Technology for the Plated Through Hole Process Technical Publication IEEE 2013 (EN)

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Integrated Metallization System for High Density Interconnects and Modified Semi-Additive Processing Technical Publication HKPCA 2012 (EN)

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Process Improve Strategies for Weak Microvia Interface Technical Publication APEX 2021 (EN)

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The Co-Evolution of Carbon-Based Direct Metallization Alongside HDI Technology Technical Publication PCB007 2020 (SC)

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The Co-Evolution of Carbon-Based Direct Metallization Alongside HDI Technology Technical Publication PCB007 2020 (EN)

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The Total Environmental Solution for Any-Layer HDI Production Technical Publication IPC APEX 2014 (EN)

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Use of Carbon Nanoparticles for the Flexible Circuits Industry Technical Publication SMTA 2013 (EN)

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mSAP Sales Sheet (EN)


The Lowest Cost Through Hole Metallization Process Available

Trusted by over 250 of the world’s leading manufacturers, MacDermid Enthone's Blackhole is the choice of fabricators worldwide that prefer a low cost, environmentally friendly direct metallization alternative to electroless copper. Suitable for both simple and complex circuit boards, carbon-based Blackhole is a nanoscale electrostatic coating that satisfies every need for reliability and versatility.

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Blackhole is an automated, horizontal process whose unique technology enables users to reduce cycle time, decrease overall water consumption, eliminate the use of formaldehyde, and produce less waste than electroless copper plating.

Chemical consumption, waste production, engineering support, and process yield, are among the many factor of PCB fabrications costs. Blackhole provides a value-in-use which drops right to your bottom-line, minimizing costs associated with installation, operation, and final product yield.

Value-in-Use Cost Savings



Electroless Copper

2 to 3 min.

Start-up Time: 97% Savings

90 min.

8 min.

Cycle Time: 87% Savings

60 min.

7 mL/ssf

Chemical Replenishment: 90% Savings

70 mL/ssf

6 L/min.

Water Consumption: 88% Savings

50 L/min.

20 mL/ssf

Water Waste Treatment: 90% Savings

200 mL/ssf


Mission-Critical PTH Reliability

Eclipse is the next generation direct metallization process, engineered specifically for fabricators and OEMs that require consistently high performance, reliability and durability. Simpler to use and considerably more cost-efficient than electroless copper, Eclipse provides high tech capabilities and RoHS-compliance all in one.

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Carbon-based Eclipse is capable of initiating 10:1 aspect ratio and higher through holes. Boards using Eclipse achieve over 500 IST cycles, and the process enables manufacturers to decrease chemical usage and water consumption by 90%. The environmentally friendly Eclipse reduces process steps by 50% and eliminates 100% of chelated metals. Utilizing an automated horizontal process, Eclipse delivers unmatched coverage and connectivity for even the most challenging designs and is supported by our renowned hands-on global technical service.

Blackhole LE and Eclipse LE

Low-Etch Direct Metallization for mSAP

The low-etch technology included in the Blackhole LE and Eclipse LE processes represents a revolutionary upgrade to equipment and chemical capabilities of carbon based direct metallization. In modified Semi-Additive Processing (mSAP), these processes are able to conserve the thin copper layer of the starting build-up material while improving the copper etch budget of the entire build-up process when compared to electroless copper based processing.

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The highly reliable microvia structures created by Blackhole LE and Eclipse LE can be used to create incredible circuit density with higher manufacturing quality and process yields than previously possible.

Fabricators currently running Blackhole or Eclipse can upgrade their lines to the LE variation with equipment modifications and chemical replacement.

Blackhole LE and Eclipse LE processes can be combined with MacuSpec VF-TH 300 via filling technology to create reliable mSAP layers with drastically shortened or no post bake while still being resistant to V-pitting defects that can occur during the layer final etch. This combined technology reduces manufacturing times by hours while increasing overall quality and yields.

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Graphite-Based Advanced Direct Metallization

Shadow is an environmentally conscious patented graphite based direct metallization process. The slightly alkaline aqueous dispersion of conductive colloids and proprietary additives makes through holes and blind vias extraordinarily conductive for copper electroplating. Shadow’s exceptional coating ability is well recognized in use on Flexible and Rigidflex, PTFE and exotic materials like LCP and hydrocarbons making it an ideal choice for today’s advanced materials.

With 26 years of technology expertise, 280 active lines, and over 1 billion boards produced, electronics fabricators all over the world trust Shadow for their primary metallization needs.

For more information on Shadow, click here.


High Performance and Production Capacity, Environmentally Friendly

Meeting the volume demand for PCBs and providing a greener world are no longer incompatible goals. ENVISION direct metallization system delivers more board capacity with substantially improved performance. The ENVISION polymer-based system is unlike any other direct metallization process on the market today.

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The significant cost savings rendered from the replacement of electroless copper with ENVISION are comprised of lower material, labor, equipment, and utility costs.

With ENVISION, fabricators no longer need to choose between high performance, cost reduction, and an environmentally friendlier process. They only need to choose ENVISION.

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