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Influence of Phosphorus Content on the Interfacial Microstructure Between Sn–3.5Ag Solder and Electroless Ni–P Metallization on Cu Substrate

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3 Author(s)
Mona ; Inst. of Mater. Res. & Eng., Singapore ; Kumar, A. ; Zhong Chen

Under bump metallization (UBM), which usually consists of a few thin metallic layers, provides good solderable surface while protecting the underlying metallization from reacting with solder. Electroless nickel (Ni-P) with a thin layer of immersion gold has been considered as one of the promising candidates for under bump and substrate metallizations. However, the presence of P in electroless Ni-P causes more complicated interfacial reactions with solder than pure Ni. The amount of P in the Ni-P layer affects the soldering reaction in terms of microstructure and reaction kinetics. In this paper, influence of P content on the interfacial microstructure between Sn-3.5Ag solder and electroless Ni-P metallization on Cu substrate has been investigated. Electroless Ni-P layers of three different P contents (6.1, 8.8, and 12.3 wt.%) with the same thickness were plated on Cu substrate. Multilayered samples with Sn-3.5Ag/Ni-P/Cu stack were then prepared and subjected to multiple reflows. Various types of interfacial compounds (IFCs) such as Ni3Sn4, Ni3P, Ni-Sn-P, Cu-Sn, and Ni-Cu-Sn formed depending upon the number of reflows. Ni3Sn4 intermetallic compound that formed in the low P sample was found to be more stable, whereas, Ni3Sn4 that formed in the medium and high P samples mostly spalled off into the molten solder during reflow. The Ni 3Sn4 spallation was found responsible for thicker Cu-Sn and Ni-Cu-Sn intermetallics in the medium and high P samples as compared to that of low P sample. Explanation for the observed interfacial microstructure is proposed in the paper in detail

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Advanced Packaging, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:30 ,  Issue: 1 )