A CMOS-compatible Process for Fabricating Electrical Through-vias in Silicon

In the past, traditional CMOS scaling has been one of the principal levers to achieve increased system-level performance. Today, scaling is becoming increasingly difficult and less effective, and a range of new two- and threedimensional silicon integration technologies are needed to support next-generation systems. A silicon-carrier System-on-Package (SOP) is an advanced packaging solution, enabling interconnection between ICs and other devices at densities far beyond those of current first-level packaging. Silicon-carrier employs fine pitch Cu damascene wiring, high-density solder pads/joins and high-yielding electrical through-vias. A novel approach to fabricating robust though-vias in silicon is described. The key design feature enabling large-area, uniform arrays to be produced with high yield is the annular via shape. As compared to a standard cylindrical via shape, the annular via is easier to integrate into a standard CMOS copper back-end-of-the-line (BEOL) process flow. Two process flows are compared: the first having the conductor metal within the gap of the insulated annulus itself, the second having a conducting metal core enclosed within the inner wall of the annulus. For the first process flow, two annular conductors, plated copper and CVD tungsten, are compared in terms of ease of integration, yield and susceptibility to failure during thermal stressing. Large area (45 x 48 mm) silicon carrier modules containing more than 51,000 electrically measurable through-vias are used to compare overall yield and robustness of each process. Results on deep thermal cycling, current carrying capacity and thermomechanical modeling are discussed. Wafer-level via testing is used to statistically distinguish between via chain opens caused by bond and assembly issues versus failures in the vias or integrated wiring structures. Through-via resistances on the order of ~10 m. are typical, and through-via yields of 99.98% at module level have been demonstrated.

By: P. S. Andry; C. Tsang; E. Sprogis; C. Patel; S. L. Wright; B. C. Webb; L. P. Buchwalter; D. Manzer; R. Horton; R. Polastre; J. Knickerbocker

Published in: RC23867 in 2006


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