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Growing Adoption of Lead-Free Electronic Assemblies Challenged by Materials and Process Considerations.

PALO ALTO, Calif. -- The effort to go lead-free is driven by a combination of environmental considerations, government legislations, and the marketing advantages of lead-free electronic packages.

Several top-tier enterprises have already set internal deadlines to transition to lead-free. The impending European lead-free legislation that comes into effect on July 1, 2006, is further expected to accelerate the move towards lead-free products.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (, World Surface Mount Technology (SMT) Roadmap, reveals that lead-free solder paste consumption is the highest in Japan, with consumer electronics being the most notable driver for the adoption.

"Lead-free solder paste is not only technologically feasible, but, in most cases, it is as reliable as traditional eutectic lead-based solder paste," says Frost & Sullivan research analyst Raman Monga. "While the industry has identified possible alternatives to traditional tin-lead solder alloy, much work needs to be done, especially in the area of component and board reliability and assembly process development."

Efficient temperature control is of crucial importance. Unless the thermal efficiency and profiles of the products being processed are improved, the problems posed by high temperature is likely to continue to restrain market growth.

Additionally, high processing temperature requires 15 to 25 percent more energy, and this makes the electronic assemblies increasingly prone to warping and board-drop issues.

Solder alloys comprising Sn/Ag/Cu have also been proved efficient, but manufacturers are uncertain if these are capable of offering long-term reliability. In a bid to solve some of the problems associated with lead-free solder paste, SMT soldering equipment manufacturers are trying to invest extensively in product development.

World Surface Mount Technology (SMT) Roadmap, part of the Surface Mount Technology Subscription, evaluates the current and future prospects of lead-free electronics assemblies in the electronics industry that includes SMT equipment suppliers, manufacturers of printed circuit board assemblies (PCBAs) and solder paste, and suppliers of electronics components and advanced electronics packaging. It provides comprehensive insight into the drivers and restraints influencing the market and provides detailed competitive information to enable companies to boost their market shares. Executive summaries and interviews are available to the press.

If you are interested in an analysis overview which provides manufacturers, end-users and other industry participants an overview, summary, challenges and latest coverage of the World Surface Mount Technology (SMT) Roadmap, send an e-mail to Julia Paulson, North American Corporate Communications, at with the following information: Full name, Company Name, Title, Contact Tel. Number, Contact Fax Number, E-Mail. Upon receipt of the above information, an overview will be e-mailed to you.

Frost & Sullivan, an international growth consultancy, has been supporting clients' expansion for more than four decades. Our market expertise covers a broad spectrum of industries, while our portfolio of advisory competencies includes custom strategic consulting, market intelligence, and management training. Our mission is to forge partnerships with our clients' management teams to deliver market insights and to create value and drive growth through innovative approaches. Frost & Sullivan's network of consultants, industry experts, corporate trainers, and support staff spans the globe with offices in every major country.

World Surface Mount Technology (SMT) Roadmap

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Aug 24, 2004
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