Studies of the mechanical and electrical properties of lead-free solder joints


The mechanical and electrical properties of several Pb-free solder joints have been investigated including the interfacial reactions, namely, the thickness and morphology of the intermetallic layers, which are correlated with the shear strength of the solder joint as well as its electrical resistance. A model joint was made by joining two “L-shaped” copper coupons with three Pb-free solders, Sn-3.5Ag (SA), Sn-3.8Ag-0.7Cu (SAC), and Sn-3.5Ag-3Bi (SAB) (all in wt.%), and combined with two surface finishes, Cu and Ni(P)/Au. The thickness and morphology of the intermetallic compounds (IMCs) formed at the interface were affected by solder composition, solder volume, and surface finish. The mechanical and electrical properties of Pb-free solder joints were evaluated and correlated with their interfacial reactions. The microstructure of the solder joints was also investigated to understand the electrical and mechanical characteristics of the Pb-free solder joints.

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Kang, S.K., Choi, W.K., Yim, M.J. et al. Studies of the mechanical and electrical properties of lead-free solder joints. Journal of Elec Materi 31, 1292–1303 (2002).

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Key words

  • Pb-free solders
  • solder joints
  • intermetallic compounds
  • morphology
  • mechanical properties
  • electrical properties
  • Sn-Ag
  • Sn-Ag-Cu
  • Sn-Ag-Bi