Scanning Microscopy


The aim of this paper is to give a review of the main steps that have led to voltage contrast equipment available to day for integrated circuit testing.

The main parameters related to quantitative voltage evaluations are discussed in the case of measurements on integrated circuits metal stripes as well as on buried lines. They concern the reduction of the local field effects, the voltage resolution improvements on the energy analysers, and the time resolution. Results concerning the E-beam perturbation of MOS circuits are reported. Due to the test conditions and the presence of additional elements inside the microscope column limitations are introduced in spatial resolution. The performances available are given. They are consistent with today's microelectronics. But, for the future, we show in this paper that the debate is not closed. It concerns both basic improvements and developments related to the use of the E-beam testers.

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