This paper presents the results of a series of bonding tests using a laser-assisted ultrasonic wire bonding process. Aluminium and copper wire, both 500 μm (20 mil) thick, were bonded to nickel-coated steel caps of type 21700 battery cells. Mechanical bond strength tests prove that laser-assisted wire bonding has significant advantages over room temperature wire bonding. For example, it can be used to reduce the process time with aluminium wire or to increase the bondability of copper wire on nickel-coated steel. The results show a direct relation between tool tip temperature and measured bond strength. The quality of the joints was effectively improved by heating the tool tip up to 430 °C. These advantages are the same as in classic thermosonic wire bonding, but without the major disadvantage of having to heat to whole package. The cell temperature was shown to remain safely below the critical 60 °C in any application.

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