Microstructural investigations of aluminum and copper wire bonds

F. Eacock , M. Schaper, S. Althoff, A. Unger, P. Eichwald, F. Hengsbach, C. Zinn, Martin Joachim Holzweissig, K. Guth, in: Proceedings of the 47th International Symposium on Microelectronics, 2014.

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Nowadays wire bonding is a widely-used technology for interconnecting chips in the packaging industry. Thereby, it is known that the bond quality massively depends upon the microstructure prevailing in the bond and consequently the materials used as well as the bonding parameters. However the actually used materials such as aluminum and gold are either characterized by comparibly poor conductivity or high costs, respectively. Due to its outstanding properties copper is a more attractive candidate. Still, a thorough investigation on the interrelationship between the material combinations, the processing parameters and the resulting microstructure for copper and aluminum wire bonding was not carried out yet. Depending on the aforementioned factors the microstructural evolution can be completely different during the bonding process. Therefore, this study focuses on the microstructural evolution of heavy copper and heavy aluminum wires bonded on copper substrates. The evolution of the wire microstructure as well as the wire-substrate-interface was investigated by scanning electron microscope in combination with electron backscatter diffraction and microhardness measurements. Various samples were extracted at different points of the bonding process, namely the as-received condition, after touchdown and after completed bonding. The results of the aluminum and copper wires were compared to each other in both longitudinal and transversal direction. It was found, that the two wire materials were completely different in the as-received condition regarding the grain size, the grain morphology, the texture and the microhardness. After touchdown the microstructure did not show significant changes in both materials, yet a strain-hardening was observed in the copper wire resulting from the touchdown force. When the bonding process was completed a different microstructure could be observed in both the wire as well as the layer for the materials investigated. Furthermore, a destinctive increase in the wire hardness could be found in case of copper, which was not observed for the aluminum wire. The ramifications between the two wire materials presented in this work will be discussed with the objective of optimizing the quality of the bonds.
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Proceedings of the 47th International Symposium on Microelectronics
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Eacock F, Schaper M, Althoff S, et al. Microstructural investigations of aluminum and copper wire bonds. In: Proceedings of the 47th International Symposium on Microelectronics. ; 2014. doi:10.4071/isom-THP32
Eacock , F., Schaper, M., Althoff, S., Unger, A., Eichwald, P., Hengsbach, F., … Guth, K. (2014). Microstructural investigations of aluminum and copper wire bonds. In Proceedings of the 47th International Symposium on Microelectronics. https://doi.org/10.4071/isom-THP32
@inproceedings{Eacock _Schaper_Althoff_Unger_Eichwald_Hengsbach_Zinn_Holzweissig_Guth_2014, title={Microstructural investigations of aluminum and copper wire bonds}, DOI={10.4071/isom-THP32}, booktitle={Proceedings of the 47th International Symposium on Microelectronics}, author={Eacock , Florian and Schaper, Mirko and Althoff, Simon and Unger, Andreas and Eichwald, Paul and Hengsbach, Florian and Zinn, Carolin and Holzweissig, Martin Joachim and Guth, Karsten}, year={2014} }
Eacock , Florian, Mirko Schaper, Simon Althoff, Andreas Unger, Paul Eichwald, Florian Hengsbach, Carolin Zinn, Martin Joachim Holzweissig, and Karsten Guth. “Microstructural Investigations of Aluminum and Copper Wire Bonds.” In Proceedings of the 47th International Symposium on Microelectronics, 2014. https://doi.org/10.4071/isom-THP32.
F. Eacock et al., “Microstructural investigations of aluminum and copper wire bonds,” in Proceedings of the 47th International Symposium on Microelectronics, 2014.
Eacock , Florian, et al. “Microstructural Investigations of Aluminum and Copper Wire Bonds.” Proceedings of the 47th International Symposium on Microelectronics, 2014, doi:10.4071/isom-THP32.

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