Advanced microelectronic packages utilize a multitude of materials with dramatically different mechanical properties. Delamination occurring at the interfaces between these materials, due to poor adhesion and/or moisture exposure, is an important failure mode affecting the thermomechanical reliability of the package. The adhesion strength of these interfaces is a critical mechanical property that plays a role in the reliability performance of these packages. A good adhesion strength metrology is required to perform material selection and enable assembly process optimization in order to avoid the need for expensive assembly builds, followed by reliability testing which leads to long development times. This paper discusses the use of the Double Cantilever Beam (DCB) method for characterizing the adhesion strength of interfaces in advanced microelectronic packages at both room and high temperatures. Previous work in this area was focused only on room temperature testing. However, in order to characterize the adhesion strength of these interfaces at elevated temperatures seen during package assembly and reliability testing, an environmental chamber was designed and fabricated to rapidly and uniformly heat the DCB samples for testing at high temperatures. Depending on the interface tested and the testing temperature, DCB samples failed in one of three fail modes: (1) adhesive (at the interface), (2) cohesive (within the adhesive layer), and (3) brittle cracking of the substrate. Two case studies describing high temperature DCB testing on silicon-capillary underfill samples are presented. With adhesive failure being the desired fail mode in order to rank order materials and processes, it was found that for the underfills tested in this study, the DCB samples failed cohesively within the underfill at room temperature but started failing adhesively at temperatures near 150°C. Adhesion strength also showed a clear degradation with temperature. It is suspected that the change in failure mode from cohesive to adhesive with increasing temperature is due to competing trends of degradation in cohesive strength of the underfill versus degradation in adhesive strength of the interface with temperature.

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