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Electronics Production | May 08, 2006

Get used to your tin whiskers

iNEMI claimes that there is much you can do to mitigate tin whiskers but you´d better get used to them since they will still form at under certain conditions.
iNEMI ha published a list of recommendations for testing and mitigation of tin whiskers but they still claim that whiskers will occur under certain conditions as long as the lead is totally removed from the manufacturing processes.

"This document took us more than three years to do," Joe Smetana, who chairs iNEMI's tin whiskers user group told Electronic News. "We started even before there was a user group and rolled in five companies. We spent a tremendous amount of time. But the conclusion is there is no way to take test data and no way to definitively say a coating won't whisker", he added.

"The problem is that all with the things we can do to mitigate whiskers, there will still be whiskers at certain temperatures," he said. "Corrosion breaks down coatings. If you get compressive stress on a finish, there is not a finish out there that will prevent it", Smetana told Electronic News.

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