Dielectric Spectroscopic Detection of Early Failures in 3-D Integrated Circuits

Tuesday, October 13, 2015: 11:20
Borein A (Hyatt Regency)
Y. S. Obeng, C. A. Okoro, J. J. Ahn, L. You (National Institute of Standards and Technology), and J. J. Kopanski (National Institute of Standards and Technology)
The commercial introduction of three dimensional integrated circuits (3D-ICs) has been hindered by reliability challenges, such as stress related failures, resistivity changes, and unexplained early failures[i]. In this talk, we will discuss a new RF-based metrology, based on dielectric spectroscopy[ii], for detecting and characterizing electrically active defects in fully integrated 3D devices.  These defects are traceable to the chemistry of the insolation dielectrics used in the through silicon via (TSV) construction.  We will show that these defects may be responsible for some of the unexplained early reliability failures observed in TSV enabled 3D devices.  While the immediate application has been in characterizing the reliability of prototypical 3D integrated circuits, the utility of this new technique could be extended to material characterization in general, for probing buried material interfaces in particular.

This low frequency RF technique could be optimized to compete favorably with other thin film metrology techniques, such as ellipsometry and FTIR, for mass production environments.  Unlike the current state of the art spectroscopic methods, this new method does not need ‘line of sight’ of the analyte, and can be used to interrogate buried structures and interfaces.

[i](a) K.N. Tu, Microelectronics Reliability, 51( 3), 2011, Pages 517–523; (b) Papers in MRS Bulletin special issue on “Material Challenges in 3D IC Technology”, 40(3), 2015

[ii] F. Kremer, A. Schönhals “Broadband dielectric spectroscopy” Springer, Berlin, 2003.