Electrodeposition and characterisation of nickel-niobium-based diffusion barrier metallisations for high temperature electronics interconnections
2016-03-16T10:04:26Z (GMT) by
The control of interfacial microstructural stability is of utmost importance to the reliability of liquid solder interconnects in high temperature electronic assemblies. This is primarily due to excessive intermetallic compounds (IMCs) that can form and continuously grow during high temperature operation, which practically renders conventional barrier metallisations inadequate. In this study, electrically conducting, NbOx containing Ni coatings were developed using electrodeposition. Their suitability as a solder diffusion barrier layer was assessed in terms of the electrical conductivity and barrier property. The present work explores a novel electrochemical route to produce Ni-NbOx composite coatings of good uniformity, compactness and purity, from non-aqueous glycol-based electrolytes consisting of NiCl2 and NbCl5 as metal precursors. The effects of cathodic current density and NaBH4 concentrations on the surface morphology, composition and thickness of the coatings were examined. A combined study of Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy (STEM) and Electrochemical Quartz Crystal Microbalance (EQCM) was conducted to understand the fundamental aspects of this novel electrodeposition process. The composite coatings generally exhibited good electrical conductivity. The reaction behaviour between a liquid 52In-48Sn solder and Ni-NbOx, with Nb contents up to 6 at.%, were studied at 200ºC. The results indicate that, Ni-NbOx with sufficient layer thickness and higher Nb content, offered longer service lifetime. Nb enrichment was generally observed at or close to the reaction front after high temperature storage, which suggests evident effectiveness of the enhanced diffusion barrier characteristics.