Tin Whisker (TW) growth in Electronics

In summary, the conversation discussed the use of Sn96Ag3Cu0.7 as a potential solution for tin whisker mitigation. The person speaking shared their experience with this solder and noted that it has been effective in suppressing tin whiskers in soldered joints after 10-15 years of service. However, they also mentioned that cheap connectors plated with pure tin can still be a problem.
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rray
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I am preparing a presentation on TW and have reviewed the NASA site which is good, but most of the data is at least 10 years old. Does anyone have any current data on TW mitigation?
Here is the NASA link I used ►► https://nepp.nasa.gov/whisker/
Thanks, Ray
 
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rray said:
Summary: I am preparing a presentation on TW and have reviewed the NASA site which is good, but most of the data is at least 10 years old.

I am preparing a presentation on TW and have reviewed the NASA site which is good, but most of the data is at least 10 years old. Does anyone have any current data on TW mitigation?
Here is the NASA link I used ►► https://nepp.nasa.gov/whisker/
Thanks, Ray
A.f.a.i.k., additional metals in Sn96Ag3Cu0.7 (my third preferred solder after Sn-Pb and Sn-Bi) or similar alloys are suppressing tin whiskers good enough. I have evaluated many parts soldered with it after 10-15 years of service and never seen a whisker in soldered joints. Cheap connectors which are sometimes plated with pure tin are a problem though - learned to avoid them.
 
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Related to Tin Whisker (TW) growth in Electronics

What are tin whiskers?

Tin whiskers are microscopic, hair-like structures that can grow on the surface of tin and tin-based alloys. They are a common phenomenon in electronic devices that contain tin components.

What causes tin whisker growth in electronics?

The exact cause of tin whisker growth is not fully understood, but it is believed to be related to stress and strain within the material. This can be caused by changes in temperature, humidity, or mechanical stress.

What are the potential risks of tin whisker growth in electronics?

Tin whiskers can cause short circuits and other electrical failures in electronic devices, leading to malfunctions or even complete failure. They can also pose a risk to human health if inhaled or ingested.

How can tin whisker growth be prevented?

There are several methods that can be used to prevent tin whisker growth, including the use of alternative materials, coatings, and stress-relieving techniques. The most effective method will depend on the specific application and materials involved.

How is tin whisker growth detected and measured?

Tin whiskers are typically detected and measured using microscopy techniques, such as scanning electron microscopy (SEM) or optical microscopy. These methods allow for the visualization and measurement of the whiskers at a microscopic level.

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