Gideon Analytical Laboratories performed failure analysis on several SM Syfer SM MLC Capacitors (also known as MLCC failures). The goal was to determine the root cause of these failures. Pictured on top left is the failed capacitor; it had an 11.5 Kohm resistance short.
The capacitors were cross sectioned. All cross sections of the new Syfer were in excellent quality. No voids, knit cracks, delamination, blow holes, or contamination was found. Electrode metal and dielectric thickness were well controlled. Half way through cross section of the width of the capacitor, crack and failure sites are revealed, as shown in the picture on the top right. The cracks spread in several directions. The one to the right continues to the right terminal and through the remainder of the body of the capacitor.
Cracks, as the one appearing in this report, are caused by mechanical stress. This usually occurs to the PCB and the capacitor (because of its stress cracking susceptibility) becomes a long term reliability issue. How long it functions depends on initial damage and what the subsequent application stresses are. Thermal stress will propagate the crack.
Failure analysis provided by Gideon Analytical Laboratories can be tremendously beneficial to a variety of companies in the electronics industry. Information and expertise that Gideon Analytical Laboratories can provide can save companies enormous amounts of time, money and insure reliability for your company’s products.