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Reliability study of the electroless Ni–P layer against solder alloy

Reliability study of the electroless Ni–P layer against solder alloy

Alam, M.O., Chan, Y.C. and Hung, K.C. (2002) Reliability study of the electroless Ni–P layer against solder alloy. Microelectronics Reliability, 42 (7). pp. 1065-1073. ISSN 0026-2714 (doi:10.1016/S0026-2714(02)00068-9)

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

Copper (Cu) has been widely used in the under bump metallurgy of chip and substrate metallization for chip packaging. However, due to the rapid formation of Cu–Sn intermetallic compound (IMC) at the tin-based solder/Cu interface during solder reaction, the reliability of this type of solder joint is a serious concern. In this work, electroless nickel–phosphorous (Ni–P) layer was deposited on the Cu pad of the flexible substrate as a diffusion barrier between Cu and the solder materials. The deposition was carried out in a commercial acidic sodium hypophosphite bath at 85 °C for different pH values. It was found that for the same deposition time period, higher pH bath composition (mild acidic) yields thicker Ni–P layer with lower phosphorous content. Solder balls having composition 62%Sn–36%Pb–2%Ag were reflowed at 240 °C for 1 to 180 min on three types of electroless Ni–P layers deposited at the pH value of 4, 4.8 and 6, respectively. Thermal stability of the electroless Ni–P barrier layer against the Sn–36%Pb–2%Ag solder reflowed for different time periods was examined by scanning electron microscopy equipped with energy dispersed X-ray. Solder ball shear test was performed in order to find out the relationship between the mechanical strength of solder joints and the characteristics of the electroless Ni–P layer deposited.

The layer deposited in the pH 4 acidic bath showed the weak barrier against reflow soldering whereas layer deposited in pH 6 acidic bath showed better barrier against reflow soldering. Mechanical strength of the joints were deteriorated quickly in the layer deposited at pH 4 acidic bath, which was found to be thin and has a high phosphorous content. From the cross-sectional studies and fracture surface analyses, it was found that the appearance of the dark crystalline phosphorous-rich Ni layer weakened the interface and hence lower solder ball shear strength. Ni–Sn IMC formed at the interfaces was found to be more stable at the low phosphorous content (∼14 at.%) layer. Electroless Ni–P deposited at mild acidic bath resulting phosphorous content of around 14 at.% is suggested as the best barrier layer for Sn–36%Pb–2%Ag solder.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: reliability study, electroless Ni–P layer, solder alloy
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics
Q Science > QD Chemistry
Pre-2014 Departments: School of Computing & Mathematical Sciences
School of Computing & Mathematical Sciences > Centre for Numerical Modelling & Process Analysis
School of Computing & Mathematical Sciences > Centre for Numerical Modelling & Process Analysis > Computational Mechanics & Reliability Group
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2016 09:02
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/1071

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