History of Soldering – an Art and a Science

History of Soldering – an Art and a Science

Sol­der­ing can be viewed as both an art and a sci­ence.

Sol­der­ing as an art stretches back over 4000 years. Rem­nants of sil­ver sol­dered joints have even been found on vases dat­ing back to 2000 –3000 BC.

Sol­der­ing as a sci­ence de­vel­oped dur­ing the 19th cen­tury. Soft sol­der­ing with lead and lead al­loys has been prac­tised by crafts­men for cen­turies. Due to the in­ven­tion of the can around 1900, a spe­cific alloy of tin and lead came to be used as the sol­der. By ex­actly match­ing the re­spec­tive quan­ti­ties of tin and lead, it was pos­si­ble not only to com­pletely seal the cans ef­fec­tively but also to ex­plain the con­nec­tions sci­en­tif­i­cally.

Thanks to the in­dus­trial up­swing in the 20th cen­tury, sol­der­ing has firmly es­tab­lished it­self as a man­u­fac­tur­ing process. Elec­tri­cal en­gi­neer­ing and elec­tron­ics owe their rapid growth not least to the re­search con­ducted in the de­vel­op­ment of sol­ders and fluxes tai­lored to meet in­dus­try needs.

Today, soft sol­der­ing is the most well-known method of join­ing metal­lic ma­te­ri­als for elec­tri­cal sol­dered joints. (So-called hard sol­der­ing or braz­ing is men­tioned here for the pur­pose of com­plete­ness only).