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Voltage Contrast in Microelectronic Engineering

Failure Analysis with a scanning electron microscope

11 August 2023 · 14 min read
  • Materials Sciences
  • Scanning Electron Microscopy
Author Dr. Heiko Stegmann Applications Development Engineer
ZEISS Microscopy
Abstract

Voltage Contrast in Microelectronic Engineering - Failure Analysis with a scanning electron microscope

The interaction of a charged particle beam, such as an electron beam in a field emission scanning electron microscope, (FE-SEM) with structures of different electric conductivity in a microelectronic circuit locally changes the electric potential at its surface. In a an FE-SEM, this effect leads to a distinct voltage contrast superimposed on the image. It is very useful for failure analysis and device debugging in microelectronic research and development.

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