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Integrated hygro-swelling and thermo-mechanical behavior of mold compound for MEMS package during reflow after moisture preconditioning

Jae B. Kwak (Global Technology Center, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Suwon, South Korea)
Seungbae Park (Department of Mechanical Engineering, State University of New York at Binghamton, Binghamton, New York, USA)

Microelectronics International

ISSN: 1356-5362

Article publication date: 5 January 2015



The purpose of this paper was to study the combined effect of hygro and thermo-mechanical behavior on a plastic encapsulated micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) package during the reflow process after exposed to a humid environment for a prolonged time. Plastic encapsulated electronic packages absorb moisture when they are subjected to humid ambient conditions.


Thus, a comprehensive stress model is established for a three-axis accelerometer MEMS package, with detailed considerations of fundamentals of mechanics such as heat transfer, moisture diffusion and hygro-thermo-mechanical stress. In this study, the mold compound is considered to be the most critical plastic material in MEMS package. Other plastic components of thin film materials can be disregarded due to their small sizes such as die attach and Bismaleimide Triazine (BT) core, even though they are also susceptible to moisture. Thus, only the moisture-induced properties of mold compound were obtained from the proposed experiments. From the desorption measurement after preconditioning at 85°C/85 per cent relative humidity (RH), the saturated moisture content and diffusivity were obtained by curve fitting the data to Fick’s equation. In addition, a new experimental setup was devised using the digital image correlation system together with a precision weight scale to obtain the coefficient of hygroscopic swelling (CHS) at different temperatures.


The experimental results show that the diffusion coefficient of mold compound material follows Arrhenius equation well. Also, it is shown that the CHS of mold compound increases as temperature increases. Experimentally obtained moisture properties were then used to analyze the combined behavior (thermo-hygro-mechanical) of fully saturated MEMS package during the reflow process using a finite element analysis (FEA) with the classical analogy method. Finally, the warpage and stresses inside the MEMS package were analyzed to compare the effects of hygroscopic, thermal and hygro-thermo-mechancal behaviors.


In this study, unlike the other researches, the moisture effects are investigated specifically for MEMS package which is relatively smaller in scale than conventional electronic packages. Also, as a conjugated situation, MEMS package experiences both humid and temperature during the moisture resistance test. Thus, major objective of this study is to verify stress state inside MEMS package during the reflow process which follows the preconditioning at 85°C/85 per cent RH. To quantify the stresses in the package, accurate information of material properties is experimentally obtained and used to improve modeling accuracy.



The authors would like to thank Xin Zhang, Analog Devices, Inc. and all members of Opto-Mechanics and Physical Reliability Lab, Binghamton University for their material and intelligent support during this study.


Kwak, J.B. and Park, S. (2015), "Integrated hygro-swelling and thermo-mechanical behavior of mold compound for MEMS package during reflow after moisture preconditioning", Microelectronics International, Vol. 32 No. 1, pp. 8-17.



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