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Morphology and growth kinetics of intermetallic compounds in solid-state interfacial reaction of electroless Ni-P with Sn-based lead-free solders

: Huang, M.L.; Löher, T.; Manessis, D.; Böttcher, L.; Ostmann, A.; Reichl, H.


Journal of Electronic Materials 35 (2006), Nr.1, S.181-188
ISSN: 0361-5235
ISSN: 1543-186X
Fraunhofer IZM ()
electroless Ni-P; lead-free solder; aging; intermetallic compound; growth kinetic

A comparative study of solid/solid interfacial reactions of electroless Ni-P (15at.%P) with lead-free solders, Sn-0.7Cu, Sn-3.5Ag, Sn-3.8Ag-0.7Cu and pure Sn,, was carried out by performing thermal aging at 150oC up to 1000 h. For pure Sn and Sn-3.5Ag solder, three distinctive layers, Ni3Sn4, SnNiP and Ni3P, were observed in between the solder and electroless Ni-P; while for Sn-0.7Cu and Sn-3.8Ag-0.7Cu solders, two distinctive layers, (CuNi)6Sn5 and Ni3P, were observed. The differences in morphology and growth kinetics of the intermetallic compounds (IMCs) at the interfaces between electroless Ni-P and lead-free solders were investigated, as well as the growth kinetics of the P-enriched layers underneath the interfacial IMC layers. With increasing aging time, the coarsening of interfacial Ni3Sn4 IMC grains for pure Sn and Sn-3.5Ag solder was significantly greater than that of the interfacial (CuNi)6Sn5 IMC grains for Sn-0.7Cu and Sn-3.8Ag-0.7Cu solders. Furthermore, the Ni content in interfacial (CuNi)6Sn5 phase slightly increased during aging. A small addition of Cu (0.7 wt.%) resulted in differences in the type, morphology and growth kinetics of interfacial IMCs. By comparing the metallurgical aspects and growth kinetics of the interfacial IMCs and the underneath P-enriched layers, the role of initial Cu and Ag in lead-free solders is better understood.