Life prediction of solder joints by damage and fracture mechanics

S. H. Ju, B. I. Sandor, M. E. Plesha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Much research has been done on Surface Mount Technology (SMT) using the Finite Element Method (FEM). Little of this, however, has employed fracture mechanics and/or continuum damage mechanics. In this study, we propose two finite element approaches incorporating fracture mechanics and continuum damage mechanics to predict time-dependent and temperature-dependent fatigue life of solder joints. For fracture mechanics, the J-integral fatigue formula, da/dN = C(ΔJ)m, is used to quantify fatigue crack growth and the fatigue life of J-leaded solder joints. For continuum damage mechanics, the anisotropic creep-fatigue damage formula with partially reversible damage effects is used to find the initial crack, crack growth path, and fatigue life of solder joints. The concept of partially reversible damage is especially novel and, based on laboratory tests we have conducted, appears to be necessary for solder joints undergoing cyclic loading. Both of these methods are adequate to predict the fatigue life of solder joints. The advantage of the fracture mechanics approach is that little computer time is required. The disadvantage is that assumptions must be made on the initial crack position and the crack growth path. The advantage of continuum damage mechanics is that the initial crack and its growth path are automatically evaluated, with the temporary disadvantage of requiring a lot of computer time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-200
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Electronic Packaging, Transactions of the ASME
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1996 Dec

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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