Authors: Rita Mohanty, Ph.D. and Ken Kirby Company: Speedline Technology Date Published: 9/24/2006
Abstract: The wave soldering process is one of the processes that is most impacted by the introduction of lead free materials. There are a number of factors to consider when optimizing the wave soldering process (flux type and application methods, preheat temperature, conveyor speed, solder pot temperature, board immersion depth, etc.). How does the introduction of lead free materials impact the wave solder process factors and wave soldering equipment itself? This article will explore the wave solder machine for the best combination of fluxer, preheat and wave configuration that will yield the optimum results in lead free soldering. In addition to the machine configuration the process parameters will be discussed as to establishing a robust process for lead free wave soldering. Solder alloy type, printed circuit board finish, and flux type will also be discussed in general as to what effect they have on the process and what is recommended for lead free. Key words: Pb-free, wave solder process, effect of flux, wave solder optimization DOE.