Thursday 29 March 2012

Test measurement capability expanded

Keithley Instruments is continuing to enhance the capabilities of its S530 Parametric Test Systems, the semiconductor industry's most cost-effective solution for high speed production parametric test. Supported by the latest version of Keithley Test Environment software (KTE V5.4), the S530 can now be configured for 48-pin full Kelvin switching and with new integrated options for pulse generation, frequency measurements, and low voltage measurements. These new enhancements allow S530 systems to address an even broader range of production parametric test applications with one high speed, cost-effective test solution.

48-pin full Kelvin switching configuration
The S530 Low Current System employs a high performance switch matrix to direct signals between instruments and test pins, providing sub-picoamp measurement resolution and low current guarding all the way to the probe pin. The latest enhancements to this system now support a 48-pin full Kelvin (four-wire) switching configuration, doubling the full Kelvin pin-count previously available. By maintaining the signal integrity associated with full Kelvin switching and cabling while doubling the system's maximum pin-count, the S530 combines precise high speed measurements with enhanced system configuration flexibility to ensure full test coverage well into the future.

Optional ring oscillator measurement capability
A new high speed, high resolution oscilloscope option supports ring oscillator testing over a broad frequency measurement range. With a sample rate of up to 400 megasamples/second, this new system option provides measurements from approximately 10kHz to 20MHz. Frequency measurement capability within parametric test systems has become increasingly important as a growing number of semiconductor fabs have incorporated ring oscillators into their overall process control monitoring test structures.

Optional pulse generation capability
As more integrated circuits incorporate embedded memory such as flash into their design, semiconductor fabs have increasingly added memory structures and measurements to their process control monitoring routines. Testing these devices requires sourcing user-defined voltage pulses to program and erase memory cells, followed by precise DC measurements of the device. To address this need, the S530 uses the same sub-system chassis that currently hosts the capacitance-voltage (C-V) instrument card to integrate two, four, or six channels of pulse generation capability into the configuration, so it can produce a wide range of device testing waveforms and extend system flexibility.

Optional System DMM
Testing van der Pauw and metal structures as part of process control monitoring demands a combination of low voltage measurements, high measurement resolution, and excellent repeatability. For these applications, S530 systems now offer an optional 7-1/2-digit, low-noise digital multimeter optimized for low voltage measurements. It provides 10nV resolution on its lowest (100mV) range and 100nV resolution on its next lowest (1V) range. It also offers 7ppm DC voltage repeatability.

Choice of low current or high voltage systems
Two different S530 systems are available. The S530 Low Current System was developed for measuring characteristics such as sub-threshold leakage, gate leakage, etc. The S530 High Voltage System incorporates a source measurement unit (SMU) capable of sourcing up to 1000V at 20mA (20W max.) to any system pin. This version is optimized for the difficult breakdown and leakage tests that GaN, SiC, and Si LDMOS power devices demand. Although the new 48-pin Kelvin capability is unique to the low current system, all of the new measurement options are available for both systems.

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