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Integrated circuit testing: from microelectronics to microsystems

Auteur(s) : S. Mir

Doc. Source: 5th IFAC Symposium on Fault Detection, Supervision and Safety of Technical Processes (SAFEPROCESS'03)

As semiconductor technologies evolve, the development of methodologies and tools for testing Integrated Circuits (ICs) become more complicated. With each new generation of devices, more and more transistors, in addition to other components such as resistors, capacitors, diodes and even Micro-Electro-Mechanical-Systems (MEMS), are integrated in a single chip. Generating and applying test stimuli for detecting device malfunction, and locating faults or design errors, becomes more and more difficult. Basic test aspects change with each new technology, such as failure mechanisms, fault models or the applicable test techniques. Test engineers struggle to keep pace with these changes that, in combination with ever increasing design complexity, make previous tools and methodologies unsuitable. In this paper, we will present a brief introduction to the field of IC testing and we will show how the incorporation on chip of transducer blocks modifies the design and test flow. Fundamental test concepts and techniques will be presented and illustrated for the case of testing embedded transducers.