Reliability of Electronics – The Role of Solder Joint Reliability DR
DR. JENNIE S. HWANG, CEO, H-TECHNOLOGIES GROUP
Where is the industry headed? Pulled by global market surges and pushed by emerging technologies, the industry is more dynamic than ever. The electronics content continues to increase in every product and service that we see, use or rely on, ranging from our car and refrigerator to space shuttle and ballistic missile. The competitive global market commands new products (e.g., Smart devices, AI and 5G gear, autonomous everything, and Internet of Things), which propels the advancement of electronics at an ever-faster pace. For instance, to enable AI and its building blocks—machine learning, deep learning, neural networks and the new generation of hardware including processor, memory and chip architecture, must deliver lower power-consumption, higher performance, less latency, higher bandwidth and faster speed. Only fulfilling these new-generation performance targets, inference processing in lieu of traditional program processing can be achieved. Accordingly, the trajectory of electronics depicts a voracious appetite for high-performance, “high-power” chips to make new-generation hardware. The next question is how to connect these phenomenal chips to the outside world seamlessly and reliably.
Against this backdrop, in packaging and assembly levels of the electronics hierarchy, Surface Mount Technology (SMT) is expected to continue serving as the critical technology forming the backbone of manufacturing production lines that timely deliver the desired products with enhanced miniaturization, increased functionality and augmented intelligence. The SMT electronics manufacturing sector, OEMs and EMSs alike, has overcome many challenges in the past and is expected to tackle new challenges head-on to produce tomorrows advanced electronic hardware. Under the established SMT process, soldering (reflow, wave and others) is also expected to continue to be a viable and necessary production technique; and its process know-how linked with production defects, yield and cost, plays a paramount role in the quality