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Reliability of Electroless Processed Thin Layered Solder Joints

  • L. C. Wang (a1), Z. Mei (a2) and R. H. Dauskardt (a1)


There has recently been an increasing interest in using electroless processes to produce the metal thin film stacks that make up the bond pads in solder ball grid array (BGA) packages. Electroless processes produce a more uniform and better controlled film thickness, but the resulting metal stacks have exhibited less mechanical reliability than that of traditional electrolytic stacks. This paper addresses a layered system consisting of a eutectic Sn-Pb solder sandwiched between stacks of Cu, Ni, and Au thin films. The samples were tested to determine cyclic fatigue behavior and fracture toughness values using traditional linear elastic fracture mechanics techniques. Surprisingly, fatigue crack propagation occurred in the middle of the solder layer even though the electroless interface was expected to be very weak. In contrast, fracture tests did appear to cause failure near an interface, but not necessarily at the electroless interface. Fracture toughness values measured for these samples were much lower than those reported for bulk metals. These results are discussed in terms of the microstructures present in order to determine possible relationships between the microstructure of the solder joint and its fracture behavior.



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2. Mei, Z., Kaufmann, M., Eslambolchi, A.. and Johnson, P., Proc. Elect. Comp. Tech. Conf. 1998, IEEE, Piscataway, NJ, 952961 (1998).
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4. Dauskardt, R. H., Lane, M., Ma, Q.. and Krishna, N., Eng. Fract. Mech. 61 (1) 141–62 (1998).

Reliability of Electroless Processed Thin Layered Solder Joints

  • L. C. Wang (a1), Z. Mei (a2) and R. H. Dauskardt (a1)


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