Isn't it interesting that "high reliability" gets to be its very own category of solder paste? The very definition of reliability is "the quality of being trustworthy or of performing consistently well" and that is something that is and always will be desireable for most applications, but sometimes there are applications where failure would be a disaster - where "turn it off and turn it back on again" is simply not an option.
One of the key tests I've been introduced to for high reliability alloys is thermal cycling. The new alloy which has been put through it's paces? - Indalloy® 292!
Indalloy® 292 is particularly focused on automotive applications, and I can see why. Cars get left out in the cold, but they are also getting increasingly hot when the engine and electronics are all running. So... a material that is good in either the hot or cold isn't good enough - we need both, and it needs to be able to survive going back and forth for YEARS.
For Indalloy® 292 the thermal cycling ranges from -40°C to +150°C for a minimum of 3,000 cycles... but we test this even longer.
Thermal cycling can take a LONG time (MONTHS!) but I have definitely enjoyed seeing how much we can learn about this alloy. The different metals included in Indalloy® 292 really prevent the formation and growth of cracks in solder joints, and I can see why industries which put a lot of strain on their devices via thermal cycling are pushing for this next generation of solder technology.
Don't forget, there are so many ways reliability is important - check out some of our other blogs to find what fits your application!
- Low voiding (Indium8.9HF)
- Response to pause (Indium8.9HF... again, I know)
- Self-healing circuits (liquid metal)
- Strength in extreme cold (indium metal)
- High temperatures (gold solders)
- And so many more...