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Creep Behavior of Lead Free Solder Interconnects in Microelectronic Packages: Impression Creep Testing and Constitutive Modeling

[+] Author Affiliations
I. Dutta, D. Pan

Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

S. Jadhav, R. Mahajan

Intel Corporation, Chandler, AZ

Paper No. IPACK2005-73408, pp. 1299-1306; 8 pages
  • ASME 2005 Pacific Rim Technical Conference and Exhibition on Integration and Packaging of MEMS, NEMS, and Electronic Systems collocated with the ASME 2005 Heat Transfer Summer Conference
  • Advances in Electronic Packaging, Parts A, B, and C
  • San Francisco, California, USA, July 17–22, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Heat Transfer Division and Electronic and Photonic Packaging Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4200-2 | eISBN: 0-7918-3762-9
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


The creep behavior of ball grid array (BGA) or flip-chip (FC) solder joints during thermo-mechanical cycling associated with service often limits the reliability of microelectronic packages. In addition, the fine intermetallic precipitates (Ag3 Sn and/or Cu6 Sn5 ) in the microstructures of the new lead-free solders (Sn-Ag and Sn-Ag-Cu) can undergo significant in situ strain-enhanced coarsening during TMC, resulting in in-service evolution of the creep behavior of the joints. Since there are significant microstructural/ compositional differences between bulk solder samples and tiny microelectronic solder joints, it is critical to develop accurate creep testing methodologies on tiny life-sized solder joints and microstructurally adaptive constitutive creep models for the emerging Pb-free solder alloys. In this paper, we present creep data obtained from tests conducted on individual Sn4Ag0.5Cu ball grid array (BGA) solder balls attached to a packaging substrate, using a newly developed miniaturized impression creep apparatus, which affords high test throughput with minimal sample preparation. Coarsening of intermetallic particles is demonstrated to influence creep behavior in two ways. At low stresses, the creep rate increases proportionately with precipitate size. At high stresses, precipitate coarsening influences creep response by altering the threshold stress for particle-limited creep. Based on the experimental observations, a microstructurally adaptive creep model, which accounts for the effects of coarsening on the creep response of solder joints, and is capable of adjusting itself as solder joint microstructures evolve during service, is presented, along with experimental determination of the relevant coarsening kinetics parameters.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



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