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Proceedings Paper

Nanoliter MEMS package gas sampling to determine hermeticity
Author(s): Steven M. Thornberg; James M. Hochrein; Therese A. Padilla; Ion C. Abraham
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Paper Abstract

Maintaining the integrity of the internal atmosphere of a hermetic device is essential for long-term component reliability because it is within this environment that all internal materials age. As MEMS package sizes decrease with miniaturization, characterization of the internal atmosphere becomes increasingly difficult. Typical transistor metal cans (e.g., TO-5 type) and large MEMS devices have internal volumes of tenths of a milliliter. Last year, gas-sampling methods for smaller-sized MEMS packages were developed and successfully demonstrated on volumes as low as 3 microliters (package outside dimensions: ~1 x 2 x 5 mm). This year, we present gas sampling methods and results for a much smaller MEMS package having an internal volume of 30 nanoliters, two orders of magnitude lower than the previous small package. After entirely redesigning the previous sampling manifold, several of the 30 nanoliter MEMS were gas sampled successfully and results showed the intended internal gas atmosphere of nitrogen was sealed inside the package. The technique is a radical jump from previous methods because not only were these MEMS packages sampled, but also the gas from each package was analyzed dozens of times over the course of about 20 minutes. Additionally, alternate methods for gas analyses not using helium or fluorinert will be presented.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 January 2005
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 5716, Reliability, Packaging, Testing, and Characterization of MEMS/MOEMS IV, (22 January 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.601183
Show Author Affiliations
Steven M. Thornberg, Sandia National Labs. (United States)
James M. Hochrein, Sandia National Labs. (United States)
Therese A. Padilla, Sandia National Labs. (United States)
Ion C. Abraham, Univ. of New Mexico (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5716:
Reliability, Packaging, Testing, and Characterization of MEMS/MOEMS IV
Danelle M. Tanner; Rajeshuni Ramesham, Editor(s)

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