Solder joining is an all inorganic, adhesive free bonding technique for optical components and support structures of advanced optical systems. We established laser-based Solderjet Bumping for mounting and joining of elements with highest accuracies and stability. It has been proven for optical assemblies operating under harsh environmental conditions, high energetic or ionizing radiation, and for vacuum operation. Spaceborne instrumentation experiencing such conditions and can benefit from inorganic joining to avoid adhesives and optical cements. The metallization of components, necessary to provide solder wetting, mainly relies on well-adhering layer systems provided by physical vapor deposition (PVD). We present the investigation of electroless Ni(P)/Pd/Au plating as a cost-efficient alternative under bump metallization of complex or large components unsuitable for commercially available PVD. The electroless Ni(P)/Pd/Au plating is characterized with respect to layer adherence, solderability, and bond strength using SnAg3Cu0.5 lead-free solder alloy.
Thomas Burkhardt, Max Mäusezahl, Marcel Hornaff, Oliver de Vries, Jan Kinast, Christoph Damm, and Erik Beckert, "Investigation of electroless Ni(P)/Pd/Au metallization for solder joining of optical assemblies using laser-based solderjet bumping," Proc. SPIE 10097, High-Power Laser Materials Processing: Applications, Diagnostics, and Systems VI, 100970D (Presented at SPIE LASE: February 01, 2017; Published: 22 February 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2254752.
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