Effect of solder flux residue on the performance of silicone conformal coatings on printed circuit board assemblies

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Abstract

Conformal coatings are applied on printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs) in order to protect the assembly from environmental influence and silicone-based coating is commonly used. A systematic study on the performance of silicone conformal coating in connection with process-related contaminants is the focus of this paper. Different test substrates such as plain laminate surface and a test PCBA with and without conformal coatings were exposed to high humid environment at ambient temperature and the performance of the coating was evaluated using various parameters such as increase in leakage current across the components, morphology of the coating, and analysis of dendrite formation due to electrochemical migration under the coating. The morphology of the coating before and after exposure was investigated using scanning electron microscopy, and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. Results show that the presence of flux residues greatly influences the electrical functionality of the components and also degrades the performance of the coatings compared to the clean substrates.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCorrosion Engineering, Science and Technology
Volume48
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)436-444
ISSN1478-422x
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Keywords

  • Blisters
  • Coating failure
  • Conformal coating
  • Electrochemical migration
  • No-clean flux residue
  • Silicone

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