Abstract

The advances on IC technology have made defect localization extremely challenging. “Soft” failures (resistive vias and contacts) are typically difficult to localize using commonly available failure analysis (FA) techniques such as emission microscopy (EMMI) and scanning optical microscopy (SOM), and often cannot be observed by two-dimensional inspections using layer by layer removal. The article describes the Resistive Contrast Imaging (RCI) defect localization technique (also known as Electron Beam Absorbed Current (EBAC), instrumentations, and case studies on test structures or process control monitors especially designed to detect “soft” open failures on advanced (28nm and below) technology devices. It also lists the key SEM parameters critical for effective FA using the RCI nano-probing system.

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