Grigory Raykhtsaum - Brookline MA
Dwarika P. Agarwal - Attleboro MA
James R. Valentine - Reading MA
David J. Kinneberg - Attleboro MA
Gold, copper, silver, palladium or aluminum and their alloys, but preferably gold or gold alloy, which may be in the form of a wire, has deposited thereon or contained within the wire, a material such as metals or metal alloys which diffuse into the gold or into the other listed metals. With the passage of time and exposure to temperature the deposited metal or metal alloy continues to diffuse into the gold forming intermetallics with the gold and thereby causing the resistivity of the gold to increase and causing the gold to become progressively more brittle until such time as the gold wire ruptures at a stress point. At a given temperature, the elapsed time until rupture takes place depends upon the metal or metal alloys deposited on or contained within the gold. Lead, indium, gallium, tin, bismuth and aluminum and the alloys of these metals diffuse into and form intermetallics with the gold. The time rate of embrittlement of the gold and the other soft metals listed is a function of the metal or metal alloy and the temperature.