Picosecond imaging circuit analysis (PICA) is an advanced diagnostic technique that measures device switching activity on CMOS ICs through the backside of the die. Due to its relatively large field of view, it can quickly locate defects among large numbers of candidates. In this case study, the authors explain how they used PICA to identify a particular I/O circuit defect on the IBM System/390 G5 microprocessor. They also explain how they verified the diagnostic result using circuit simulations.
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