Let’s Start At The Very Beginning
Before embarking on a complicated task one needs to have the basics understood.
In the musical “The Sound of Music,” Maria teaches the Von Trapp children to sing by first teaching them the musical scale.
She quickly discovers that the basics really do need to be learned one note at a time.
By the end of the “Do Re Mi” song she has them singing harmony while she sings a new melody with the words “When you know the notes to sing, you can sing most anything.”
My goal in writing this blog on the topic of testing semiconductors is to provide you the basics– the building blocks. Upon these blocks you can tackle the complex engineering tasks of semiconductor manufacturing test. You can use testing of semiconductors to distinguish good from bad, to assess the reliability of a part, to anticipate failures, to recover from defects with redundancy, to improve product yield by learning the nature of failures. These knowledge blocks can extend to electronics board testing.
Because I like history, I’ll throw in some historical perspectives from my knowledge banks and pass along relevant war stories I have heard in my career. As role-modeled by both my parents, professionals must continually update their knowledge. I do this be reading industry news and the academic literature on test. Most certainly for the reliability audience that will be reached via Accendo Reliability I will be expanding my own knowledge by reading the reliability literature. For most blog posts I will supply a few references to enable further exploration.
Each blog post will be tagged as a 1, 2 or 3 to indicate level of mastery:
Naturally along the way the jargon and abbreviations will be shared. I plan to maintain a glossary that I will share once it has been set up (give me a few blog posts).
Test Topics to Cover
I will tag the blog with respect to some other categories:
Circuitry type: Analog, Logic, Memory, MEMS
Device Under Test: Semiconductor, Package, Board System
Manufacturing Step: Wafer/Die, Package/Unit, Burn-In, Board, System, Field
Test Approaches: Functional, Fault Model based, Defect Based, Alternative, Adaptive
Test Journeys for You to Travel
With the basics you can test most anything. There exist several journeys that I would like to eventually take with you via this weekly blog. To whet your appetite, consider: understanding ISO 26262–the automotive functional safety specification, the evolution of digital test from stuck-at-faults to more complex models, the test and reliability of Internet of Thing (IOT) devices, board test and system test, manufacturing tests of modern semiconductor devices, test methodology and Design For Test (DFT) approaches that make complex devices economically testable and make them knowable enough for yield learning.
Next post will address various manufacturing test approaches. Then stay tuned for an introductory posts on logic, memory and analog circuit test. In the comments let me know the topics you would like me to address in future articles. I will use your feedback to determine which journey to focus on first.
Meanwhile remember testing takes time and thoughtful application,
Anne Meixner, PhD
Looking for an accessible professional magazine on Test? Check out IEEE Computer Society’s Design and Test. You can subscribe as an IEEE or your company may have an institutional subscription.