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Getting Ready for Lead‐free Solders*

N.‐C. Lee (Indium Corporation of America, Clinton, New York, USA)

Soldering & Surface Mount Technology

ISSN: 0954-0911

Article publication date: 1 December 1997



This paper reviews the status of lead‐free solder development works. Some of the solder systems — Bi‐Sn, Bi‐Sn‐Fe, ln‐Sn, Sn, Sn‐Ag, Sn‐Ag‐Zn, Sn‐Ag‐Zn‐Cu, Sn‐Bi‐Ag, Sn‐Cu, Sn‐Cu‐Ag, Sn‐In‐Ag, Sn‐Sb, Sn‐Zn and Sn‐Zn‐ln — are discussed in more detail, while others are briefly commented on. In general, compared with eutectic Sn‐Pb solder, all the lead‐free solder alternatives investigated more or less exhibit some shortcomings, such as price, physical, metallurgical or mechanical properties. Relatively, Sn‐ln‐containing systems are more promising in terms of solder mechanical properties and soldering performance, although the price of ln may be a concern. Eutectic Sn‐Ag solder doped with Zn, Cu or Sb exhibits good mechanical strength and creep resistance, due to refined microstructure. The Bi‐Sn systems doped with other elements may have a niche in the low temperature soldering field. Eutectic Sn‐Cu has good potential due to its good fatigue resistance. The eutectic Sn‐Zn system modified with ln and/or Ag may be promising in terms of mechanical properties. Finding a lead‐free alternative for high temperature solders presents the biggest challenge to the industry.



Lee, N.‐. (1997), "Getting Ready for Lead‐free Solders*", Soldering & Surface Mount Technology, Vol. 9 No. 2, pp. 65-69.




Copyright © 1997, MCB UP Limited

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