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Volume I, Issue 1


Technical Briefs Home

The President's Corner

Molding Compound Lawsuit Quietly Settled

Lead-Free and the Military / Aerospace Dilemma

GEIA Hot Solder Dip Specification

Ionic Contamination at the Component Level

Column Grid Array: The Solution to BGA Reliability Problems


Molding Compound Lawsuit Quietly Settled

Recently, a $125 million out-of-court settlement was reached between Fujitsu Limited, Cirrus Logic, Amkor Technologies and Sumitomo Bakelite Co. This case revolved around the use of elemental (red) phosphorus in place of bromine and antimony as fire retardants in the molding compound in order to make the molding compound more “environmentally friendly”. Claims were made that the subject molding compound (under certain conditions) emitted an acid that caused Fujitsu’s hard drives to fail. According to news articles, millions of IC’s have been produced between 1996 and 2002 utilizing this molding compound. This same phosphorus-based molding compound has also been involved in other lawsuits.

Organic phosphorus-based flame-retardants have now largely replaced the inorganic (red) phosphorus since the reaction products tend to be less corrosive.

Six Sigma’s reliability department recommends that all plastic components, with date codes between ‘96 and ’02 used in high reliability applications, be examined.

For more information*, please contact Six Sigma’s Failure Analysis/Reliability Department.

* Due to legal restrictions, disclosure of technical information will be limited.

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Last web page update was on : February 22, 2006

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