Glycolic Acid in Electronics

Glycolic Acid: An Effective Cleaning and Complexing Agent

Electronics manufacture requires ultra-high purity materials—even the smallest amounts of metallic impurities can severely damage sensitive components. In such demanding and critical applications, choosing the right cleaning and complexing agent is essential.

Glycolic acid is important for applications that require low levels of metallic impurities. Designed for cleaning copper substrates in electronics, glycolic acid uses hydroxyl and carboxylic acid groups to form five-member ring complexes (chelates) with polyvalent metals. This complexing ability facilitates the cleaning of copper substrates to provide an excellent surface for further processing.

Glycolic acid offers:

  • Good complexing of metal ions
  • Low corrosion rates
  • An efficient pH adjustment profile
  • Good environmental, safety, and handling properties

Standard Tech Grade

The versatile glycolic acid technical grade 70% offers zero chloride content and provides basic electronics cleaning and copper substrate preparation. Its characteristics include acid and alcohol functionality, low toxicity and corrosiveness, and excellent soil removal properties.

Glyclean™ Electronics

This electronics-grade glycolic acid offers favorable chelating properties on copper surfaces and substrates in electronic applications. Applications like flat-panel, thin-film transistor (TFT) processing—which require ppm-level metal impurities and are used in the manufacture of flat panel televisions—also benefit from its use.

Glyclean™ eGA

Glyclean™ eGA enables and improves many formulations used in semiconductor fabrication. Glycolic acid is used to remove etch residues (like polymers or particles) from semiconductor wafer substrates. These substrates are cleaned with a solution containing glycolic acid that removes particles such as photoresist residues and other contaminants.