Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 45, Issue 2, pp 334–340 | Cite as

Electromigration-induced Bi-rich whisker growth in Cu/Sn–58Bi/Cu solder joints

  • Hongwen HeEmail author
  • Guangchen Xu
  • Fu Guo


Effect of current stressing on whisker growth in Cu/Sn–58Bi/Cu solder joints was investigated with current densities of 5 × 103 and 104 A/cm2 in oven at different temperatures. Two types of whiskers, columnar-type and filament-type, were observed on the solder film propagating along the surface of the Cu substrate and at the cathode interface, respectively, accompanied with many hillocks formation. Typically, these whiskers were 5–15 μm in length and 0.06–2 μm in diameter. EDX revealed that these whiskers and hillocks were mixtures of Sn and Bi rather than single crystal. It should be noted that the sprouted whiskers would not grow any more even if the current-stressing time increased again when the solder joint was stressed under lower current density. Nevertheless, when the current density was up to 104 A/cm2, the whiskers would melt along with the increasing current-stressing time. Results indicated that the compressive stress generated by precipitation of Cu6Sn5 intermetallics provides a driving force for whisker growth on the solder film, and the Joule heating accumulation should be responsible for whisker growth at the cathode interface.


Solder Joint Solder Ball Whisker Growth Solder Matrix Whisker Formation 



The authors acknowledge the financial support of this work from the New Century Talent Support Program, Ministry of Education, and the Funding Project PHR (IHLB).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Materials Science and EngineeringBeijing University of TechnologyBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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