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Proceedings Paper

Failure analysis of surface-micromachined microengines
Author(s): Kenneth A. Peterson; Paiboon Tangyunyong; Alejandro A. Pimentel
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Paper Abstract

Microelectronic failure analysis (FA) has been an integral part of the development of state-of-the-art integrated circuits. FA of MicroElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS) is moving from its infancy to assume an important role in the successful design, fabrication, performance and reliability analysis for this new technology. In previous work, we focused on the application of several techniques developed for integrated circuit analysis to an earlier version of a surface micromachined microengine fabricated at Sandia. Recently, we have identified important new failure modes in binary counters that incorporate a newer design of the microengine, using a subset of integrated circuit failure analysis techniques including optical microscopy, focused ion beam (FIB) techniques, atomic force microscopy (AFM), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The primary failure mode we have identified is directly related to visible wear on bearing surfaces. In this paper, we describe in detail the characteristics of the failure modes in binary counters. We also compare the failure characteristics with those of an earlier version of the microengine.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 September 1998
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 3512, Materials and Device Characterization in Micromachining, (1 September 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.324056
Show Author Affiliations
Kenneth A. Peterson, Sandia National Labs. (United States)
Paiboon Tangyunyong, Sandia National Labs. (United States)
Alejandro A. Pimentel, Sandia National Labs. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3512:
Materials and Device Characterization in Micromachining
Craig R. Friedrich; Yuli Vladimirsky, Editor(s)

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