Journal of Electronic Materials

, Volume 31, Issue 10, pp 1122–1128 | Cite as

Study on the microstructure of a novel lead-free solder alloy SnAgCu-RE and its soldered joints

  • Z. G. Chen
  • Y. W. Shi
  • Z. D. Xia
  • Y. F. Yan
Special Issue Paper


This paper focused on the microstructure of SnAgCu-rare earth (RE) solder alloy and its small single-lap joints, focusing on phases present and the distribution of RE in the SnAgCu solder. Energy dispersive x-ray (EDX) analysis was used to observed the RE-rich phase. The RE atoms also tended to aggregate at boundaries of primary dendrites in the joints and form as a weblike structure, which surrounded the dendrites and restrained the dendrites from sliding or moving. It is assumed that this would strengthen the boundaries and increase the resistance to creep deformation of the solder matrix. The creep-rupture life of joints can be remarkably increased, at least seven times more than that of SnAgCu at room temperature. The aggregation mechanism of RE at dendrite boundaries in SnAgCu solder joints was presented. The drive for RE atoms to aggregate at the boundary is the difference of the lattice-aberration energy between the interior and the boundaries of the dendrites, which is caused by a solution of RE atoms.

Key words

SnAgCu lead-free solder rare earth microstructure creep 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    B.P. Richards, C.L. Levoguer, and K. Nimmo, “An Analysis of the Current Status of Lead-Free Soldering” (Presentation), Department of Trade and Industry, United Kingdom, 1999.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Y. Miyazawa and T. Ariga, Mater. Trans. 42, 776 (2001).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    B. Richards and K. Nimmo, “An Analysis of the Current Status of Lead-Free Soldering—Update 2000,” Department of Trade and Industry, United Kingdom, 2000.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    S. Grum, Electron. Packaging Prod. 40, 13 (2000).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    D.R. Frear, Electrotechnik Informationstechnik 118, 81 (2001).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    E. Bradley III and J. Hranisavljevic, 2000 Electronic Components and Technology Conf. (Piscataway, NJ: IEEE, 2000), pp. 1443–1448.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    N.-C. Lee, Adv. Microelectron. 26, 29 (1999).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Y. Zhu (M.S. thesis, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China, 1992).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    J. McDougall, S. Choi, T.R. Bieler, K.N. Subramanian, and J.P. Lucas, Mater. Sci. Eng. A285, 25 (2000).Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    K.-W. Moon, W.J. Boettinger, U.R. Kattner, F.S. Biancaniello, and C.A. Handwerke, J. Electron. Mater. 29, 1122 (2000).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Y.K. Zhu and Q.Y. Han, Application of Rare Earth in the Steel (Beijing, China: Metallurgical Industry Press, 1987), p. 238.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Y. Zhu (Ph.D. thesis, Harbin Institute of Technology, 1996).Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    D. Zhou, Common Chemistry, ed. Staff Room of Chemistry (Harbin, China: Harbin Institute of Technology Press, 1992).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© TMS-The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Z. G. Chen
    • 1
  • Y. W. Shi
    • 1
  • Z. D. Xia
    • 1
  • Y. F. Yan
    • 1
  1. 1.The Key Laboratory of Advanced Functional Materials of Ministry of Education, School of Materials Science and EngineeringBeijing Polytechnic UniversityBeijingRepublic of China

Personalised recommendations