Role of thin Sn layer for low temperature Al-Al thermo-compression bonding of wafer-level hermetic sealing

Shiro Satoh, Hideyuki Fukushi, Masayoshi Esashi, Shuji Tanaka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


This paper reports low temperature hermetic wafer bonding using Al/Sn/Al/Sn/Al as a bonding layer. The Al surface of the bonding layer was oxidized in air, but hermetic sealing was demonstrated without surface treatment at 370~390°C, which was lower than the maximum temperature of CMOS backend process (400°C). For the successfully sealed samples, the bonding layer was considerably compressed and squeezed, and the remaining thickness was only <16% of the initial one, i.e. the reduction rate was >84%. On the other hand, the samples without Sn layers inserted, i.e. using a pure Al bonding layer, were not hermetically sealed at similar temperatures, showing the reduction rate smaller than 70%. A clear correlation between the reduction rate and the yield of hermetic sealing was observed. Taking account of analytical results and Al-Sn phase diagram, it is suggested that Al-Sn liquid phase in Al grain boundaries enhances the grain slip deformation of the bonding layer and fractionates the surface Al oxide layer during the bonding process. The function of Sn for Al-Al bonding suggested in this paper is useful for wafer-level hermetic MEMS packaging at low temperature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)432-437
Number of pages6
JournalIEEJ Transactions on Sensors and Micromachines
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 1


  • Aluminum (Al)
  • Low temperature bonding
  • MEMS packaging
  • Thermo-compression bonding
  • Tin (Sn)
  • Vacuum seal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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