IEEE Transactions on Components and Packaging Technologies, Vol. 29, No. 3, pp. 522- 527, July 2006.

The Influence of Substrate Enhancement on Moisture Sensitivity Level (MSL) Performance for Green PBGA Packages

T. Lin
Agere Systems Singapore Pte, Ltd.

M. Pecht and D. Das
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742
National University of Singapore


As the electronics industry migrates to the lead- and halogen-free (green) packages, many of the materials used in plastic ball-grid array (PBGA) substrates, in particular the molding compounds and die attaches, will have to be improved. The moisture sensitivity level (MSL) performance of the large nongreen PBGA packages are typically reduced by at least one JEDEC/IPC level at the lead-free reflow temperature of 260oC. Common failure mechanisms of traditional large size PBGA packages include popcorning, as well as delamination and cracks between the solder mask/copper interface in the multiple layer substrates.

In this paper, the interfacial adhesion of traditional and advanced substrate materials and processing technologies are presented based on reliability tests of various PBGA packages subject to moisture soaking followed by reflow soldering at 260oC. It was found that substrate failures with delamination at the solder mask/copper interface were dramatically improved by introducing advanced materials and processes for multiple-layer substrates. However, the partial or full delamination at the mold compound/solder mask interface could still be observed after lead-free reflow soldering. There is an urgent need to improve the adhesion between mold compound/solder mask in order to achieve high MSL performance of large size and green PBGA packages.

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