The Back-End-of-Line Reliability Metrology project supports measurements for advanced manufacturing and cybersecurity in the areas of secure nano-manufacturing, novel devices and electronic materials. Specifically, the project aims to develop the metrology required to enable a quantitative assessment and physical understanding of performance limiting reliability issues in emerging electronic devices related to new materials, processes, and integration schemes. Examples include metrology and documentary standards to enable mass manufacturing of three dimensional integrated circuits (3-D ICs).
Article Selected as Highlight of 2016
Recent article titled “Subsurface imaging of metal lines embedded in a dielectric with a scanning microwave microscope” was selected as one of the top 60 papers of around 1000 published (top ≈5 %) by the Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics as one of their Highlights of 2016. This annual selection represents the breadth and excellence of the work published in the journal. The selected articles include outstanding new research, chosen for the high praise received from referees, presentation of outstanding research and popularity with our online readership.
The ultimate aim of this project is to develop the metrology to enable physics of failure (PoF) approaches to reliability assessments in support of designed-in reliability in nano-manufacturing of advanced electronics. Our work uses direct experimental measurements and inferred root causes of failure to inform modeling and simulation analyses, in order to address various reliability and failure mechanisms in electronic devices.
This project leverages our competencies in electrical scanning probe microscopy (eSPM), electromagnetics (broadband RF-measurements), X-ray micro-diffraction, thermo-mechanical properties and semiconductor process integration knowledge to achieve its goals. Some of the ongoing studies include:
- Non-destructive electrical scanning probe microscopy (eSPM) based metrology for subsurface detection of defects and metal interconnects in the nanoscale regime.
- Probe-assisted deterministic doping (PADD) for localized modification of material properties in nanoscale devices. This allows for unique identification signatures of products for cyber security applications.
- Use of synchrotron-based X-ray micro-beam sources for depth-dependent measurement of the full stress tensors in interconnects used for 3-D integrated circuits (3-D ICs).
- Adaptation of radio frequency (RF) based methods for reliability assessment of advanced interconnects, such as copper TSVs.
- Simulation and modeling of electromagnetic and RF measurements using finite element methods.