The use of nanoparticles to control grain size and mechanical properties of solder alloys at high homologous temperature is explored. It is found that silica nanoparticles in the 100 nm range coated with 2 nm to 3 nm of gold can be dispersed within solders during the normal reflow soldering process, and that these particles are effective in hardening the solder and restricting dynamic grain growth during compression testing at low homologous temperature. As the homologous temperature increases towards 0.75, the effects of the nanoparticles on both mechanical properties and dynamical grain growth reduce, and by homologous temperatures of 0.86 the effects have completely disappeared. This behavior is explained by introducing the concept of an effective volume fraction of pinning nanoparticles, and the practical implications for using nanoparticles to control solder properties via Zener pinning at high homologous temperatures are discussed.
Nanocomposite solder grain boundary hot compression