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Spin Coating of Dielectrics on Thin Silicon Wafers to Enhance Strength Characteristics
Keywords: Thin silicon wafer handling, Spin-on wafer stiffener, Bend testing
Handling of thin silicon or other types of wafers is a challenging problem in semiconductor manufacturing. Thinner die and wafers allows great shrinkage in package design and circuit board form factor. As wafer thicknesses approach the 100 micron and less dimension, die and wafer handling becomes more and more of a challenge without cracking or breaking the wafer and or die. Thin wafers can flex and bend which can induce micro cracking throughout the wafer resulting in weak die which may fail earlier during reliability testing. By adding a spin-on coating to the wafer prior to backing grinding to final thickness, wafer strength may be increased. As wafer strength increases, handling issues are reduced thus allowing more thin wafers and die to be used for more mainstream electronic products without effecting reliability. Additionally, if the spin-on coating is photo-imageable or is of a type of material that can support other deposition process, the other side of the wafer or die may be used to contain circuitry or inter-connective structures allowing more assembly or 3D design techniques to be applied. Three-point bend testing of coated versus non-coated wafer samples of various thicknesses can determine flexibility and determine if coating the wafer actually strengthens it to improve handling properties. Key points of the study include: • Use ASME three-point bend stress test to evaluate silicon wafer samples of two different thicknesses: 100 microns and 50 microns • Compare non-spin coated wafer samples to coated samples and determine if spin coating reduces handling issues of thin wafers and die • Characterize different thicknesses of dielectric materials and how thickness relates to strength of sample after stress testing • Characterize different dielectric materials • Compare real data with already published data and strength reliability formulas
Fred E. Haring,
North Dakota State University - Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering
Fargo, ND

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