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Session Details

PDC D4: Copper and Gold Ball Bonding: Intermetallics, Aging and Bond Reliability (3:30-5:30pm)
(Event: IMAPS 2017 - 50th International Symposium on Microelectronics)

Oct 09, 2017 3:30pm - Oct 09, 2017 5:30pm
Session Type: PDC


Track D:

D4: Copper and Gold Ball Bonding: Intermetallics, Aging and Bond Reliability
Instructor: Lee Levine, Process Solutions Consulting


Course description:

Wire Bonding is a welding process that is the dominant chip interconnection method. More than 15 trillion wires are bonded annually. In the past gold wire was predominant but in 2015 copper and palladium coated copper wire captured more than 51% of the total market.  Copper provides benefits in cost, improved conductivity, stiffness and reliability. However, it is significantly harder than gold and achieving a robust, reliable process is a challenge.  Wire bonding high-volume lead-frame often experiences defect rates below 10ppm, this presents a significant barrier to entry for any process competitor but copper is meeting the challenge.


Like any welding process wire bonding forms an intermetallic nugget that is an alloy of the wires being bonded.  The quality and reliability of the intermetallic weld is the key to long-term reliability. After initial bond formation the intermetallic undergoes dynamic transformations from one intermetallic alloy to another as diffusion and growth proceeds and the bond ages. Each intermetallic phase has different properties and lattice structures. Phase transformations can result in significant lattice strain and fail precipitously. Wire alloy chemistry plays an important role in intermetallic alloy transformations and can play an important role in achieving a successful high-reliable process.


Ultrasonic energy provides the driving force input for bond formation. Ultrasonics changes the material properties of the ball and substrate allowing easy internal flow and deformation joining the mixture into an alloy.  The effect of ultrasonic energy on bond formation will be discussed.



Lee Levine is a consultant for Process Solutions Consulting, Inc. where he provides process engineering consultation, SEM/EDS analysis, and wire bond training.  Lee’s previous experience includes 20 years as Principal and Staff Metallurgical Process Engineer at Kulicke & Soffa and Distinguished Member of the Technical Staff at Agere Systems. He has been awarded 4 patents, published more than 70 technical papers, and has won both the John A. Wagnon Technical Achievement award and the Daniel C. Hughes award from the International Microelectronics and Packaging Society (IMAPs). Major innovations include copper ball bonding, loop shapes for thin, small outline packages (TSOP and TSSOP, and CSPs) and introduction of DOE and statistical techniques for understanding semiconductor assembly processes. He is an IMAPs Fellow and a senior, life member of IEEE.

Lee is a graduate of Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pa where he earned a degree in Metallurgy and Materials Engineering.  



Session Fees
Fee TypeMember FeeNon-Member Fee
This session is free
Early: $300.00 $300.00
Regular: $400.00 $400.00
Late: $400.00 $400.00

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