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Silicon Probe Conditioning Technique

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000045463D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-07
Document File: 2 page(s) / 20K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Pistor, RL: AUTHOR

Abstract

This article concerns a method for conditioning tungsten or tungsten carbide probe tips used in the testing of silicon semiconductor devices. The method features steps for abrading the probe tips with a slipstone prior to their use.

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Silicon Probe Conditioning Technique

This article concerns a method for conditioning tungsten or tungsten carbide probe tips used in the testing of silicon semiconductor devices. The method features steps for abrading the probe tips with a slipstone prior to their use.

Testing of transistor devices before metallization requires proper contact of the test probes to the silicon device. This article proposes a method to reduce contact resistance so that proper characterization of the devices can be obtained. The probes, typically of tungsten or tungsten carbide, are arranged in a fixed pattern which corresponds to the device to be tested. Typically, the probes are mechanically mounted on epoxy glass cards.

The method of the article, as illustrated in the figure, includes steps for conditioning the probe tips by abrading them with a machine tool sharpening stone. This method has been shown to be effective in the removal of debris, films and burrs from the probe tips which are detrimental in device testing. The abrasive action on the slipstone sufficiently conditions the probe tips to insure minimum contact resistance to silicon. First, the probe tips are moved with a vertical motion onto the surface of the slipstone. Thereafter, the tips are raised and the slipstone is moved laterally a small distance. The tips are then again brought in contact with the slipstone's new surface. These steps are repeated from 20 to 100 times. The probe tips are then cleaned with an iso...