Mechanisms Underlying the Unstable Contact Resistance of Conductive Adhesives
Wong, C. P.
Tong, Quinn K.
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One critical obstacle of current conductive adhesives is their unstable contact resistance with nonnoble metal finished components during high temperature and humidity aging. It is commonly accepted that metal oxide formation at the interface between the conductive adhesive and the nonnoble metal surface is responsible for the contact resistance shift. Two different mechanisms, simple oxidation and galvanic corrosion, both can cause metal oxide formation, but no prior work has been conducted to confirm which mechanism is the dominant one. Therefore, this study is aimed at identifying the main mechanism for the metal oxide formation and the unstable contact resistance phenomenon of current conductive adhesives. A contact resistance test device, which consists of metal wire segments and conductive adhesive dots, is specially designed for this study. Adhesives and metal wires are carefully selected and experiments are systematically designed. Based on the results of this systematic study, galvanic corrosion has been identified as the underlying mechanism for the metal oxide formation and for the observed unstable contact resistance phenomenon of conductive adhesives.