Microtech2010 2010

Tin Whisker Mitigation – A Nanotechnology Enabled Solution

M. Yang, R. Fink, N. Jiang, J.P. Novak
Applied Nanotech, Inc., US

Keywords: tin whisker, reliability, electronics, sinter, nanoparticle


Over the years, tin-based lead solder has been used extensively as a coating material in the electronics industry because electrodeposits of this solder exhibits excellent solder-ability, electrical conductivity and oxidation resistance. Unfortunately lead-free, tin-based solders tend to grow tin whiskers that cause electronic circuit shorts. The elimination of tin whisker formation and mitigation of whiskers has been researched for decades with varying degrees of marginal success. Applied Nanotech (ANI) has taken a nanotechnology approach to solving this problem; both from looking at it from the molecular level and using nanoparticles in its R&D in its efforts to understand and solve the technical impasse. ANI’s novel approach directly addresses the mechanism of tin whisker growth by relieving compressive stresses that develop in the tin based solders at grain boundaries and put stress on the tin lattice structure.
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