Thermal management problems in electronic packages have been a challenging problem due to increasing number of transistors in chips and reduction in product size. Thermal interface materials (TIM) help heat dissipation by reducing thermal contact resistance between chip and integrated heat spreader (IHS) and TIM quality is critical for effective removal of heat generated from the package. Therefore, identification of defects within TIM is required during package assembly process development. Imaging techniques such as computerized scanning acoustic microscopy (CSAM) and X-ray tomography are used as non-destructive testing techniques to identify TIM defects qualitatively. More recently, it was shown that IR thermography can be used as a qualitative means of identifying defects as well. Thermal diffusion tomography is a powerful alternative to those techniques due to its lower cost and ease of application. In this study, quantitative characterization of defects in TIM is presented using thermal diffusion tomography. The study is conducted considering a high density interconnect flip chip package that includes spreading effect due to different sized IHS and die. Defect size and location are detected analyzing the measured thermal response of electronic package by solving the resulting inverse problem by Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm as an image reconstruction technique.

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