Soldering is a widely used method of joining materials, especially electronic components, but there are a series of reasons why it may not work as intended. This publication presents a comprehensive but concise overview of solders, solder types, fluxes, how they work, interactions between substrate, solder and flux, and problems in using various soldering processes. It is written by engineers and scientists with experience of advising on diagnosing soldering problems. It concentrates however, on what can go wrong. Other published work tends to be about technical developments, rather than descriptions of the main features. This publication seeks to fill that gap. Solders have seen many changes as a result of the demand for lead-free alloys. The more common alloys are described. The different soldering processes including surface mount technology, wave soldering, soldering irons and other techniques are all described highlighting common problems and their causes. Solder pastes are discussed. Reliability issues can arise for many reasons and the main cases are variability in performance of pastes, which are described. The wide variety of surfaces that are soldered exhibit a wide range of behavioural characteristics and these are discussed with reference to their solder wetting properties. Some of the more common causes for poor solder wetting and weak solder joints are described.
Publisher: ERA Technology Ltd
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