As semiconductor packaging becomes more complex, more analysis is required at the package level. There are several techniques that are used frequently for package level analysis. These include: acoustic microscopy, hermetic seal techniques, optical microscopy, particle impact noise detection (or PIND), and x-ray radiography. In addition to these non-destructive techniques, it is also necessary to have techniques to access or expose the die for further analysis. This access may be from the front side or the back side depending on the device and the information required.
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An important step in most analysis work is gaining access to the die surface or backside of the silicon. There are a wide variety of package styles and configurations, and as such, there are a variety of decapsulation techniques. This material covers decapsulation and sample preparation techniques for both frontside and backside analysis work.
Decapsulation - Overview
Backside Sample Preparation - Part 1
Backside Sample Preparation - Part 2
Backside Sample Preparation - Part 3
Quiz: Package Decapsulation and Backside Sample Preparation
Decapsulation/Backside Sample Preparation
Package Access Certificate
Because the package can cover potential problems, one needs techniques for examining the package. These techniques fall into two categories: destructive and non-destructive. Destructive techniques involve removing material or puncturing a device cavity, while non-destructive techniques use electrical, x-ray, magnetic, or acoustic techniques to image structures or observe electrical behavior within the package.
Package Inspection Techniques - Overview
Package Inspection Techniques - Part 2
Package Inspection Techniques - Part 3
Package Inspection Techniques - Part 4
Package Inspection Techniques - Part 5
Quiz: Package Analysis Techniques
CSAM Video Presentation
X-Ray Microtomography Example
X-Ray Nanotomography Example
Package Inspection Techniques Certificate
Scanning Acoustic Microscopy is an important technique used in failure analysis and quality inspection of semiconductor components. Scanning Acoustic Microscopy or (SAM), uses sound waves and their interactions with materials and materials interfaces to produce a waveform or image of the internal construction non-destructively. SAM primarily detects changes at interfaces, so these features are the primary ones in the image or waveform. Engineers use SAM to identify cracks, delaminations, voids, and placement of structures in complex packages.
SAM - Equipment
SAM - Imaging Modes
SAM - Interpretation
SAM - Physics of Operation
Quiz: Acoustic Microscopy
X-Ray Radiography is an important non-destructive technique used not only for failure analysis but also for package inspection during the assembly process. In this course we cover the fundamentals of x-ray radiography, including how one generates and forms an x-ray image, the effects of materials on x-ray transmission. We also cover the equipment used for x-ray inspection, interpretation of x-ray images, and how one performs computed tomography (CT) imaging.
X-Ray Radiography - Computed Tomography
X-Ray Radiography - Equipment
X-Ray Radiography - Fundamentals
X-Ray Radiography - Interpretation
Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) is a non-destructive technique used for package-level failure analysis. We use it to isolate opens or large changes in resistance within the package substrate, or connections between the substrate and die. TDR is also used for signal integrity verification in high-speed test. In this course we cover the basics of TDR, the equipment and setup, and how to interpret TDR signals. We also discuss the latest developments, including Electro-Optical TDR, which uses light pulses to provide better spatial resolution.
Time Domain Reflectometry
Quiz: Time Domain Reflectometry
Time Domain Reflectometry
Time Domain Reflectometry Certificate
Magnetic Field Imaging (MFI) is a non-destructive technique used for localizing current paths within an integrated circuit. We also use the technique to isolate opens and resistive connections. In this course we cover the fundamental physics governing MFI, the equipment used to perform this work, gathering images, the differences between the different sensor types (Superconducting Quantum Interference Device (SQUID) and Giant Magnetoresistive (GMR) sensors), and how to interpret the images. We also discuss Space Domain Reflectometry and how it is used to localize opens.
Magnetic Field Imaging
Magnetic Field Imaging - Applications
Quiz: Magnetic Field Imaging
Magnetic Field Imaging Certificate