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Infrastructure Impacts Data Analytics


Semiconductor data analytics relies upon timely, error-free data from the manufacturing processes, but the IT infrastructure investment and engineering effort needed to deliver that data is, expensive, enormous, and still growing. The volume of data has ballooned at all points of data generation as equipment makers add more sensors into their tools, and as monitors are embedded into the chip... » read more

Silicon Lifecycle Management


How do you track, measure and ensure reliability over the lifetime of a chip, regardless of how or where it is used? Steve Pateras, senior director of marketing for test products at Synopsys, drills down into the impact of hardware-software co-design, over-the-air updates, the expected lifetime of designs, and how the various monitors and sensors are used to track environmental, structural and ... » read more

Adaptive Test Gains Ground


Not all devices get tested the same way anymore, and that’s a good thing. Quality, test costs, and yield have motivated product engineers to adopt test processes that fall under the umbrella of adaptive test, which uses test data to modify a subsequent test process. But to execute such techniques requires logistics that support analysis of data, as well as enabling changes to a test based ... » read more

Does HW Vs. SW Choice Affect Quality And Reliability?


Electronic systems comprise both hardware and software. Which functions are implemented with hardware and which with software are decisions made based upon a wide variety of considerations, including concerns about quality and reliability. Hardware may intrinsically provide for higher device quality, but it is also the source of reliability concerns. This is in contrast with popular views of... » read more

Why Data Format Slows Chip Manufacturing Progress


The Standard Test Data Format (STDF), a workhorse data format used to pull test results data from automated test equipment, is running out of steam after 35 years. It is unable to keep up with the explosive increase in data generated by more sensors in various semiconductor manufacturing processes. First developed in 1985 by Teradyne, STDF is a binary format that is translated into ASCII or ... » read more

From Design To Deployment: How Silicon Lifecycle Management Optimizes The Entire IC Life Span


The beginning of the IC journey gets most of the attention in the semiconductor world – the challenges of design, test and manufacturing. But the reality is the entire lifecycle of a chip needs attention, requiring ways to ensure a chip’s intended and ongoing operation, especially in ever-changing operating environments where chips ultimately reside. The growing complexity of today’s e... » read more

Key Aspects Of Yield Management Systems For Fabless Startups


Do you work for a fabless start-up? Are you ramping up? If so, you need data-analysis tools for your production data. You will struggle without them. You have two options for yield management analysis. You may decide to hire an engineer (or team of engineers) whose job is to transfer the data from datalogs to a spreadsheet, then generate reports. Or, you could invest in a system that takes c... » read more

What’s WAT? An Overview Of WAT/PCM Data


Wafer acceptance testing (WAT) also known as process control monitoring (PCM) data is data generated by the fab at the end of manufacturing and generally made available to the fabless customer for every wafer. The data will typically have between forty and one hundred tests, each test having a result for each site (or “drop-in”) on the wafer. The sites are located so that the fab can monito... » read more

Israel: Startup Powerhouse


Israel is at the front of pack with China and the United States when it comes to tech startups. But when it comes to large, indigenous tech giants, the country is nowhere to be seen. Virtually every major semiconductor company does business in Israel, and many have a strong presence there through centers of excellence or companies they have acquired. But after decades of innovation ranging f... » read more

Early And Fine Virtual Binning


Not all chips are created equal, and this is viewed as both a blessing and a curse by semiconductor makers. On one hand, chips can be screened for certain attributes, and some of the chips can be sold for higher prices than others. On the other hand, variations in the production process cause silicon performance to greatly differ, leaving chip makers with a wide and somewhat unpredictable distr... » read more

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