SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1972

An Investigation of Fatigue Life Performance in Lap-Type Solder Joints


The reliable operation of data processing equipment depends upon the mechanical integrity of many thousands of solder joints, particularly upon the resistance of the joints to strain-cycle fatigue fractures resulting from component temperature (and thermal expansion) excursions. In an attempt to develop life prediction techniques for solder joint fatigue fracture, two test programs were conducted—torsion fatigue tests of pure tin, pure lead, tin-lead eutectic solder, and tin-lead-indium solder, and shear-fatigue tests of lap-type solder joints employing tin-lead eutectic solder. Although solder joints are operated in an “elevated temperature” range (0 to 100 C) for these metals, no significant temperature effect was discovered in the fatigue life behavior of eutectic tin-lead solder. It was observed that increasing temperature enhanced the fatigue life of pure lead (for the cyclic strain rates employed). The fatigue behavior curves provided a design aid for conservative estimates of solder joint lives.

Author Information

Coombs, VD
IBM Corporation, Endicott, N. Y.
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Developed by Committee: G03
Pages: 3–21
DOI: 10.1520/STP34675S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-4616-7
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-0117-3