The orientation of the devices within a package determine the best chosen approach for access to a select component embedded in epoxy both in package or System in Package and multi-chip module (MCM). This article assists the analyst in making decisions on frontside access using flat lapping, chemical decapsulation, laser ablation, plasma reactive ion etching (RIE), CNC based milling and polishing, or a combination of these coupled with optical or electrical endpoint means. This article discusses the general characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages of each of these techniques. It also presents a case study illustrating the application of CNC milling to isolate MCM leakage failure.
The need for precise targeted interactive surgery on boards or modules is the main driver of backside preparation technology. This article assists the analyst in making decisions on backside thinning and polishing requirements. Thinning of the substrates can be accomplished by flat lapping, laser assisted chemical etch, plasma reactive ion etch, and CNC based milling and polishing. The article discusses the general characteristics, key principles, advantages, and disadvantages of these processes. It also contains case studies that illustrate the application of these processes to ceramic cavity devices, injection molded parts, and ball grid arrays.