Effects of Load and Thermal Conditions on Pb-Free Solder Joint Reliability

Document Type




Format of Original

9 p.

Publication Date




Source Publication

Journal of Electronic Materials

Source ISSN


Original Item ID

doi: 10.1007/s11664-004-0092-z


Reliability of lead-free solder joints has been a hot topic widely debated in the electronic industry. Most published data indicate that a change to lead-free soldering has the potential benefit of more reliable solder joints than the current Sn-Pb eutectic solder joints. However, in reality many mechanical, metallurgical, thermal, and environmental factors affect the service reliability of solder joints. This paper tries to shed some light on the effects of mechanical loading and thermal conditions on solder joint reliability. These conditions are determined not only by external environments but also by the solder alloy itself and the joint geometry. Analyses with first principles are carried out on solder joints of both areal array and peripheral packages. Effects on fatigue life of solder joint geometry, thermal and mechanical characteristics of components and substrate materials, and application conditions are discussed. The analysis helps explain why lead-free solder joints may not be more reliable in certain application conditions than the current Sn-Pb eutectic solder joints.


Journal of Electronic Materials, Vol. 33, No. 12 (December 2004): 1507-1515. DOI.