Electronics and Semiconductor Devices

ZFE is one of the leading materials characterisation experts for the semiconductor industry. Relying on a profound experience in device and failure analysis in microelectronics, we focus on new characterisation methods mostly based on electron microscopy (SEM-EDX-WDX-EBSD, FIB-processing and STEM-EDX-EELS-EFTEM). We continuously provide services for leading semiconductor companies and co-operate with them via national and European research projects.

Our surface and microanalytical methods are extremely critical in

Reducing bond failures in microelectronics

The detailed characterisation of bond failures by means of electron microscopy and x-ray spectrometry (SEM-EDX) helps to improve bondability and reliability of wire bonds in microelectronics. SEM evaluation and FIB cross-sectioning are also used to study the influence of high temperature or chemical effects on bond wires.

Wire bond investigated by scanning electron microscopy, secondary electron image, channeling contrast image (BSE) and backscatter electron diffraction (EBSD) image.

Site specific metrology in semiconductor analysis

Development and testing of semiconductor devices requires extensive knowledge of local structures with high accuracy. Typically, cross-sections of the devices are site-specifically prepared with the focused ion beam technology (FIB milling) and the TEM characterisation involves classical TEM techniques and advanced atomic resolution STEM.

STEM-HAADF image of a large area cross-section of a semiconductor device.

Nanoanalysis of semiconductor devices

Information about the elemental composition is critical for identifying anomalies that cause the semiconductor devices to fail. Here, the STEM in combination with EELS and EDXS is one of the most powerful methods. EELS and EDXS spectrum imaging help to better understand materials complexities and failures to improve device performance.

STEM-HAADF investigation of a tungsten plug in an integrated circuit; with electron distribution map (RGB-image) derived from an EDX-spectrum image revealing the elements Si, O, Ti and W.

STEM-EELS analysis of the chemical phases in a semiconductor device (blue = SiO2, green = Si3N4, red = Si); HAADF-image with chemical phase map by MLLS fitting of a Si L edge spectrum image using the ELNES-changes and core level shifts.

Interested? Please do not hesitate to contact us:
Hartmuth Schröttner  | +43 (0) 316 873 8349
Dr. Werner Grogger | +43 (0) 316 873-8323



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Environmental Analysis

Paper and Fibres


Steels and Alloys