Tin Pest in Sn-0.5Cu Lead-Free Solder Alloys: A Chemical Analysis of Trace Elements


Two samples of Sn-0.5Cu solder alloys, stored at −18°C for 7 years, were chemically analyzed by an inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy method. One of the samples was unaffected by this exposure; the other one had completely transformed into brittle α-Sn. Ten elements were found to exhibit statistically significant differences in their concentrations between the two samples, with the higher always associated with the untransformed sample. The highest concentrations were found for elements with an appreciable solubility in Sn, i.e., Bi, In, Pb, and Sb.

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This research is a contribution to the European COST Action MP 0602. Financial support of the Austrian Science Foundation (FWF) under Project No. P 17346 is gratefully acknowledged.

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Correspondence to Herbert Ipser.

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Leodolter-Dworak, M., Steffan, I., Plumbridge, W.J. et al. Tin Pest in Sn-0.5Cu Lead-Free Solder Alloys: A Chemical Analysis of Trace Elements. Journal of Elec Materi 39, 105–108 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11664-009-0958-1

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  • Metal and alloys
  • lead-free solders
  • aging
  • phase transformations
  • tin pest
  • chemical analysis