Combined effects of surface oxidation and interfacial intermetallic compound growth on solderability degradation of electrodeposited tin thin films on copper substrate due to isothermal ageing

© 2018 Elsevier Ltd We report new insights into the solder wettability degradation of Sn thin films on Cu under 155 °C isothermal ageing. A multiscale wettability degradation model was established, reflecting quantitatively the surface oxidation and interfacial intermetallic compound (IMC) growth, on the basis of solder wetting behaviour. The thermal oxidation of Sn exhibited heterogeneous inward thickening, lateral expanding and outward platelet-like growth, forming nanocrystalline, oxygen-deficient SnO2with pronounced voiding/cracking propensity. Unlike a commonly held belief that the initial wettability loss is due to surface-exposing and oxidation of IMCs, it was found from dual combined effects of inward surface oxidation and outward IMC growth.