E-Newsletter Spring 2014

E-Newsletter Spring 2014

Our latest newsletter covers: Plastic Package Decapsulation Gel-coat removal on MEMS devices FIB modification through WL-CSP layers Follow us on LinkedIN Download it here – E-Newsletter – Spring...
In-situ or Ex-situ?  An unbiased view on which TEM section lift-out method is best for you.

In-situ or Ex-situ? An unbiased view on which TEM section lift-out method is best for you.

NanoScope FIB technology article. Just posted here is the full article discussing the relative merits of both methods of FIBxTEM section extraction and the factors to consider when choosing which is better for your sample types. You may think the answer is a foregone conclusion, with in-situ foil extraction being clearly more advanced and more effective as an extraction method than ex-situ, but hold on to that thought, as there may be some less obvious issues that are worth your consideration. Included here is a detailed analysis of each of these rival techniques across the following areas of applicability – 1st      Speed – with the hands down winner being ex-situ 2nd     Yield – more controversial with advocates on both sides 3rd     Quality issues (of the section produced) 4th     Cost – a clear winner here 5th     Versatility – not such a common topic but vital for TEM users 6th     Ease of use – this must be a slam dunk or? 7th     Special circumstances Lets just check our terms and the common perception of what’s what for this technique. FIBxTEM section or foil = The site specific FIB milled sample biopsy that is FIB polished to become electron transparent and extracted to a TEM grid before being transferred to a TEM microscope for more detailed studies. ‘in-situ’ foil extraction – where a ‘thick’ biopsied section is transferred to a TEM grid inside the FIB-SEM instrument using a nano-manipulator and attached there before being FIB polished to the required ‘thinness’ and then transferred to a TEM. ‘ex-situ’ foil extraction – where a site specific feature is thinned to electron transparency BEFORE extraction, then...
New Dual Acid FIB edit capabilities available now.

New Dual Acid FIB edit capabilities available now.

NanoScope has brought Dual-Acid decapsulation in-house, and extended those capabilities. This equipment was part of a larger equipment acquisition and more FA and other capabilities will become available over the next few weeks. By bringing these capabilities in-house we can further reduce the turnaround time of decap work for our semiconductor customers needing urgent Failure Analysis or Circuit Nano-Surgery (Circuit Edit), while ensuring that the quality remains high and the costs remain low. We are very pleased to have increased the depth of expertise within our organisation for supporting a wider range of Failure Analysis applications beyond Circuit Nano-surgery, high end microscopy and physical device analysis. Gel-coat removal for MEMS devices For MEMS clients needing access to Gel coated devices for Failure Analysis, Structural Analysis or Structural modifications with FIB, we have also added a chemical etch  process for packaged MEMS devices.  This service is available with the same fast-turnaround as our other services. A New FIB process for accessing a device ‘through a WL-CSP package’. Circuit Nano-Surgery to a device already packaged with CSP and RDL layers, can now be easily achieved without removing the package in most cases. Working through a CSP layer adds a little time to a surgical process, but has only a small effect on the efficacy or yield of a surgical intervention. Testing advantages WL-CSP packaging can also be a shortcut for the high speed testing of 1st Silicon engineering devices prior to FlipChip packaging. Working through these layers means that more complex edits can be performed ‘top-down’, with lower costs and higher yields, producing some significant time and cost savings. Some handling...
New Decapsulation Capability Coming Soon

New Decapsulation Capability Coming Soon

NanoScope is bringing additional capabilities in house – from Unisem. Unisem has been a key supplier for NanoScope Services for many years, and we have worked closely together to offer our clients the best support available from both sites. The unfortunate recent closure of the Unisem Crumlin site has been widely seen as a reduction in the strategic capabilities of the UK semiconductor industry, both in terms of the equipment available but also the extensive experience of the engineers who worked there. However, NanoScope has been successful in acquiring much of the FA capability of the Unisem facility and we are now in the process of transferring this equipment over to our Bristol Laboratory. We plan to offer Dual-acid decapsulation from early February 2014, with even shorter turnaround times than previously, with other techniques to follow. For more information please contact Lloyd Peto at NanoScope on 07768 172049 Or email...
Accelerating MEMS development with FIB Nano-Surgery

Accelerating MEMS development with FIB Nano-Surgery

In this article I will be discussing why the growth in MEMS development is lagging the growth that was witnessed for IC development in many respects – but highlighting that there are valuable lessons available to accelerate future growth too. Both for design and manufacture there are non-trivial challenges that continue to hinder the growth of this technology in the way IC technology developed. The emergence of Fabless MEMS design houses as a successful model is only just starting to expand. The promise of successfully mimicking Fabless Chip design houses as a functioning corporate model, has not happened as expected. Fabless growth is limited by many factors such as an absence of standardisation, a diverse range of foundry capabilities, and also that MEMS behavioural modelling is still the poor cousin of IC modelling. Independent MEMS foundries are also struggling to mimic the growth seen by their IC brethren. The lack of standardisation and the variety of FAB processes required to support a broad spectrum of MEMS designs, continues to be a hindrance. Routine volume based profits available from a dial-up/high yield/integrated process are proving elusive. Every MEMS Foundry is offering a different toolset and process book, and yields/costs can still be variable. Because the range of applications is so diverse, it is difficult to streamline or standardise the manufacturing process for clients supporting different markets. There are no ‘off the shelf’ processes that can be equally applied to devices as varied as a microphone and a gyroscope, and the old adage of ‘1 process/1 product’ is proving to be difficult to overcome. This situation is further complicated by the introduction...
Adding Nano-Surgery flavour to NMI Event

Adding Nano-Surgery flavour to NMI Event

IP integration can be a shortcut to market if effectively executed, but has many pitfalls for the unwary. Nano-Surgery as a fast remedial option provides an extra level of security to designers using acquired IP for new products. Our invited presentation titled ‘When Integration Goes Wrong – your Nano-Surgery Options’ was given at the recent NMI meeting at Imagination Technologies in Kings...
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