Thermal Characterization Laboratory

The Thermal Characterization Laboratory covers all aspects concerning experimentation in thermal management, local electro-thermal characterization, and reliability/ruggedness studies addressed in IMB-CNM’s Power Systems Integration and Reliability research sub-line. In addition, these activities could find synergies with other fields dealing with the electro-thermal characterization in the nano-microelectronic scenario.

Main activities

In this framework, the main activities of the Thermal Characterization Laboratory aim at:

• Thermal management design and assessment at system level of power devices or systems (thermal conductivity extraction, temperature measurement for simulation assessment),
• Thermal characterization of packaged devices and systems (thermal impedance and resistance extraction);
• Local electro-thermal characterization at die level (applicable to low power integrated systems, e.g. Systems-on-Chip)
   o Optical methods for depth-resolved characterization at chip level: Free-Carrier Absorption, Internal IR Laser Deflection, Fabry-Perot Interference,
   o Surface-resolved electro-thermal characterization: IR thermography, Liquid crystal thermography, CCD-thermo-reflectance thermography.
• Debugging and design for ruggedness of new devices and monitoring electrical and thermal performances degradation due to ageing or overloading events:
   o Location of physical failure signatures at die level,
   o Thermal performances degradation due to packaging ageing, local electrical degradation of the device.
   o Study of modulated heat sources by lock-in detection for non-invasive evaluation of structural defaults, extraction of Figures of Merit in Frequency (FOMs) from IC/device internal nodes, and local physical parameters in devices


• Analysis of thermal behavior of power devices and systems (hot-spots, thermal coupling, reliability, modeling, etc.), using specific thermography techniques (IR detection, CCD-thermo-reflectance, or Fabry-Perot interferometry).


• Thermal parameters extraction systems for integrated power systems thermal management (modules, substrates, modeling, simulation parameters, etc.): material thermal conductivity and packaged devices thermal impedance and resistance measurements.


• Analysis of electro-thermal behavior at device level ("hot-spots", reliability, carrier lifetime, modeling, etc.) using techniques based on optical deflection (IIR-LD), absorption (FCA) and interferometer (FPI) of an IR laser beam.


• Failure signature location and microelectronic systems debugging by sensing thermal fields.


• Infrared Thermography measurement equipment
   o Infrared camera FLIR SC5500 in optical bench
   o Infrared camera AGEMA Thermovision THV-900
   o Macroscopic and microscopic lenses (minimum spatial resolution 6 µm)
   o Lock-in thermography set-up
• Depth-resolved Electro-thermal characterization
   o Measurement of internal temperature and free carrier concentration, as well as their gradients
• Thermo-reflectance thermography system
   o High spatial resolution thermography
• Thermal conductivity measurement system
   o KTH measurement of materials involved in power packages
• Thermal resistance/impedance measurement system
   o Measurement of RTH / ZTH using thermo sensitive parameters

Contact person of Thermal Characterization Laboratory:
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