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Old 09-02-2008, 10:51 AM
 
2 posts, read 4,980 times
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This is amazing.

Has anyone heard about this?

Tin Whiskers - a knol by Steve Smith
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Old 09-02-2008, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Hopewell New Jersey
1,393 posts, read 7,144,327 times
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Well known in the electronics field

FYI...look up Tin Pest"... different thing but also hard to believe
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Old 09-03-2008, 08:24 AM
 
2 posts, read 4,980 times
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The Tin Pest I found was known long ago, where the tin metal crumbles
to a powder in very cold weather. The tin whiskers are amazing for
two reasons. First, that the metal actually grows metal whiskers and
second, that scientists have known about this for decades and yet the
entire electronics manufacturing industry went and changed to this.

If it is so well known in the electronics industry that the whiskers
of tin make things fail, why do the electronics manufacturers continue
to do this?

Maybe it is not really so well-known, or maybe the lawyers just have
not found out.

UW
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Old 09-03-2008, 08:25 AM
 
Location: Texas
5,070 posts, read 9,123,865 times
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Here's a wiki article, complete with pictures of whiskers. At the bottom, there are several links.
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Old 09-03-2008, 09:03 AM
 
Location: Hopewell New Jersey
1,393 posts, read 7,144,327 times
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It's very well known and has been for a long time.

The driving force behind the change you speak of is the "Greenies" that insist on removing lead...as in lead/tin solder from the electronics field.

Read the article previous referenced. Also look at this

Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

BTW...there are other "whisker" effects with other materials also . There are also many bimetalic long term actions such as the Al./Au aluminum/gold inner metalic growth known as the purple plague. It occurs between the Au. ultrasonically attached wire bonds and the Al. bonding pads on an intergrated circuit.

Lots of strange things in the micro world.
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Old 09-03-2008, 09:42 AM
 
Location: The Rock!
2,370 posts, read 7,077,190 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JBrown View Post
It's very well known and has been for a long time.

The driving force behind the change you speak of is the "Greenies" that insist on removing lead...as in lead/tin solder from the electronics field.

Read the article previous referenced. Also look at this

Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

BTW...there are other "whisker" effects with other materials also . There are also many bimetalic long term actions such as the Al./Au aluminum/gold inner metalic growth known as the purple plague. It occurs between the Au. ultrasonically attached wire bonds and the Al. bonding pads on an intergrated circuit.

Lots of strange things in the micro world.
Ah yes...intermettalics...funny thing they are, you have to have them to have a good bond but if they form in the wrong manner then you'll have a wire bond doomed to fail. Purple plague in and of itself is not the cause of failed wire bonds but a symptom of non-optimal bonding conditions.
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Old 09-08-2008, 11:01 PM
 
Location: Texas
5,070 posts, read 9,123,865 times
Reputation: 1632
Even smaller whiskers, made at Ornl
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