As the electronics industry moves towards miniaturization, the semiconductor industry provided packaging innovations to meet the demands for smaller footprints. One of the packaging solutions is the small outline transistor (SOT) which is widely used in various applications including automotive engine downsizing. Decapsulation of small packaged devices like a 1.3mm by 2.9mm SOT is one of the greatest challenges in failure analysis. The destructive nature of decapsulation may cause inadvertent and permanent damage, hindering further electrical verification on the unit. In this paper, a novel method for decapsulating SOT devices is presented utilizing the use of acrylic molding to avoid damage on the units during decapsulation process. Results show that the use of acrylic molding is an effective method in decapsulating SOT packaged devices maintaining die functionality, hence, addressing the decapsulation issues and risks caused by other existing decapsulation methods.

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