Traditionally, reliability defects are addressed by end-of-line electrical measurements and extensive and dedicated testing during packaging. These tests cover almost every known defect condition and ensure product reliability with high confidence, but they occur in the final stage of manufacturing and are quite time intensive. This paper shows that inline reliability metrology based on Raman spectroscopy is an effective approach for early fault detection and can be used to monitor unintended epi growth, strain, lattice defects, stacking faults, dislocations, and post-etch residues. It can also reveal process anomalies and potential material problems. The paper examines the relationship between process parameters and reliability and reviews the enablers of preventive, early-detection inline metrology in the fab.

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