IEEE Transactions on Device and Materials Reliability, Vol. 3, No. 2, pp. 39-43, June 2003

An Investigation of the Contact Resistance of a Commercial Elastomer Interconnect Under Thermal and Mechanical Stresses

Weifeng Liu
Hewlett Packard
Roseville, CA

Mikyoung Lee and Michael Pecht
CALCE Electronic Products and Systems Center
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742


The contact behavior of a commercial elastomer interconnect, composed of silicone rubber and silver particles, was evaluated under thermal and mechanical stresses. Its contact resistance demonstrated a linear relationship in a log-log plot with contact force at room temperature; however, a deviation of the trend occurred when temperature was changed.With the interconnect compressed under a constant force, a fluctuation in contact resistance was initiated by a change of temperature. This phenomenon may be attributed to the inherent conduction mechanisms of the elastomer interconnect. The multiple interfaces between metal particles make the contact sensitive to a variety of factors. This sensitivity may have a direct impact on its long-term reliability.

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