The Great Test Blur


As chip design and manufacturing shift left and right, concerns over reliability are suddenly front and center. But figuring out what exactly what causes a chip to malfunction, or at least not meet specs for performance and power, is getting much more difficult. There are several converging trends here, each of which plays an integral role in improving reliability. But how significant a role... » read more

How Many Test Miles Make A Vehicle Safe?


The road to reliable safety testing of autonomous vehicles (AVs) is shifting left. Standards groups are beginning to publish functional safety standards that could make it possible to verify what a machine-learning AV pilot application will do in a traffic situation even before hardware or software is released from validation testing. This kind of approach has been possible for some time in ... » read more

Who Is Responsible For Part Average Testing?


With ever-increasing demands in the automotive industry, more and more semiconductor companies are interested in monitoring and improving quality and reliability. Outlier detection and more specifically Part Average Testing (PAT) is the industry standard for the automotive industry. But, who is responsible for quality? Historically, OSATs are responsible for this. In the past, once they... » read more

Challenges Of Logic BiST In Automotive ICs


The electronics in passenger cars continues to grow, and much of it is bound by the strict functional safety requirements formalized in the ISO 26262 standard. The ICs that drive the electronics systems in automobiles are also increasingly complex, designed to execute artificial intelligence algorithms that govern emerging self-driving capabilities. Designers are quickly adopting comprehensi... » read more

Practical Ways To Reduce Test Time


If someone said that paper never refused ink, they could have said the same about test programs and tests. Early on in my career as a test development engineer, I commented out all tests except the key test for the new product I was working on. This allowed me to isolate the test and fix its repeatability. The next pre-production run finished much earlier than I expected and I was impressed ... » read more

5G OTA Test Not Ready For Production


5G is poised to dominate the wireless world, but over-the-air (OTA) testing of 5G beamforming antennas is still not ready for volume production. Beamforming is a critical element in the millimeter wave version of 5G, because of the limitations of ultra-high-frequency signals. Unlike 4G and its predecessors, millimeter wave technology will not penetrate objects, so signals need to be directed... » read more

Power, Reliability And Security In Packaging


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss advanced packaging with Ajay Lalwani, vice president of global manufacturing operations at eSilicon; Vic Kulkarni, vice president and chief strategist in the office of the CTO at ANSYS; Calvin Cheung, vice president of engineering at ASE; Walter Ng, vice president of business management at UMC; and Tien Shiah, senior manager for memory at Samsun... » read more

Case Study—RF ASIC Validation Of A Satellite Transceiver


ASIC validation in the RF world comes with its own set of hurdles and challenges, with high-quality lab equipment, experience and know-how essential. A recently completed RF sub-system validation at S3 Semiconductors is presented in the form of a case study of the execution. The validation PCB design focussed on impedance matching and shielding RF signals from noise sources. We built up an effi... » read more

Test Moving Forward And Backward


Test, once considered an important but rather mundane way of separating good chips from the not-so-good and the total rejects, is taking on a whole new life. After decades of largely living in the shadows behind design and advancements in materials and lithography, test has quietly shifted into a much more critical and more public role. But it has taken several rather significant shifts acro... » read more

5G Drives New Test Approaches


Test/validation providers are claiming steady progress in the race to deliver 5G network components that support millimeter-wave as well as lower-frequency networks. Going from a state of no existing off-the-shelf test equipment suitable for 5G standalone new radio (NR), test companies are introducing equipment that can handle mmWave component testing on a limited scale. 5G is a next-generat... » read more

← Older posts