Better Analytics Needed For Assembly

Many defects occur after manufacturing, but not all of them are being caught.

By: Anne Meixner, Semiconductor Engineering (as published on Semiconductor Engineering)

Package equipment sensors, newer inspection techniques, and analytics enable quality and yield improvement, but all of those will require a bigger investment on the part of assembly houses.

That’s easier said than done. Assembly operations long have operated on thin profit margins because their tasks were considered easy to manage. Much has changed over the past several years, however. The role of assembly houses has grown significantly as device scaling becomes more expensive and power/performance improvements diminish, making advanced packaging significantly more attractive. In addition, there is a growing emphasis on more reliability in many markets, raising the need for more testing, inspection and analytics of these multi-chip packages. That requires more sophisticated and expensive equipment, as well as new methodologies. The combination of all of these factors has put a squeeze on smaller assembly houses, which do not have the resources of the larger OSATs.