Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. has released the flexProber system, an SEM-based nanoprobing platform that provides electrical characterisation and fault isolation capability for process development, device design debug and failure analysis.

The system is designed to help engineers quickly locate and identify electrical faults using an SEM to position fine mechanical probes on exposed circuit elements. Accurately locating the fault can improve productivity and cost-effectiveness in subsequent analysis by ensuring that the fault is included when a thin section is extracted for high-resolution imaging in a TEM, Thermo Fisher aid.

The flexProber system includes a new SEM column specifically designed for probing applications, with improvement in resolution compared to its predecessor, the nProber II. It incorporates many of the capabilities of Thermo Fisher’s Nanoprober product line and is designed to address a broad range of semiconductor device types and process technologies. It provides an ideal pathway into electrical probing, offering an entry-level configuration while preserving the option to upgrade to full Nanoprober system capability in the future, Thermo Fisher noted.

Key Benefits

  • Platform stability: Fast, repeatable probe motion control and low drift rates for stable electrical measurements
  • Integrated system operation: Guided workflows and software control of measurements and SEM setup for efficient operation
  • SEM column designed for nanoprobing: High resolution at low landing energies with large FOV

Demonstration of the flexProber was showcased at the 24th International Symposium on the Physical and Failure Analysis of Integrated Circuits (IPFA 2017).