Solder joints Of CU/Sn-3.5Ag were prepared using Cu foil or electroplated Cu films with or without SPS additive. With a high level of SPS in the Cu electroplating bath, voids tended to localize at the Cu/Cu(3)Sn interface during subsequent aging at 150 degrees C, which was highly detrimental to the drop impact resistance of the solder joints. In situ Auger electron spectroscopy of fractured joints revealed S segregation Oil the Cu/Cu(3)Sn interface and void surfaces, suggesting that segregation of S to the Cu/Cu(3)Sn interface lowered interface energy and thereby the free energy barrier for Kirkendall void nucleation. Once nucleated, voids can grow by local tensile stress, originating from residual stress in the film and/or the Kirkendall effect. Vacancy annihilation at the cu/Cu(3)Sn interface can induce tensile stress which drives the Kirkendall void growth. (C) 2008 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.