Autoclave Stress failures were encountered at the 96 hour read during transistor reliability testing. A unique metal corrosion mechanism was found during the failure analysis, which was creating a contamination path to the drain source junction, resulting in high Idss and Igss leakage. The Al(Si) top metal was oxidizing along the grain boundaries at a faster rate than at the surface. There was subsurface blistering of the Al(Si), along with the grain boundary corrosion. This blistering was creating a contamination path from the package to the Si surface. Several variations in the metal stack were evaluated to better understand the cause of the failures and to provide a process solution. The prevention of intergranular metal corrosion and subsurface blistering during autoclave testing required a materials change from Al(Si) to Al(Si)(Cu). This change resulted in a reduced corrosion rate and consequently prevented Si contamination due to blistering. The process change resulted in a successful pass through the autoclave testing.

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