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Electrical Testing of Passive Components
Electrical Testing of Passive Components
Substrates have become more critical with regard to pitch and density leading to increased use of buried components. This paper reviews testing for buried capacitors.
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Authored By:
Todd L Kolmodin, Howard Carpenter
Gardien Services USA

Manfred Ludwig
Gardien Services China


Summary
Substrates have become more critical with regard to pitch and density in today's designs with challenges for passive components in terms of surface placement. This negates the opportunity for high speed, high cost components to be placed on the surfaces of the PCB. With this the capacitance and resistive components have to be embedded into the design.

This has been accomplished with the advent of buried capacitance cores and buried resistors. Unfortunately this has caused some challenges to the ET Test Centers/Labs in the ability to effectively test these buried passive components. Processes have had to change and adapt to these new technologies. The paper will discuss what these new technologies are and how the Electrical Test arena has adapted to provide accurate testing of the buried resistors and accommodate the buried capacitive cores to not receive false errors from the Grid Testers and Flying Probes.

Conclusions
As technology grows and PCB sizes shrink the demand for embedded technologies will only grow. Many end-users are designing embedded passives into their products and the Electrical Test community is expected to provide the test solutions for these new powerful designs. The use of buried resistors is increasing and care must be taken to identify these components during the ET CAM process so that the test machines are aware of them and do not overpower them with standard test parameters.

For the design community that uses the buried core technology the manufacturers of this material have always recommended using the largest configuration for the buried resistor as feasible. As noted previously the "square" should be as large as feasible to provide the required resistance while also maintaining the optimum power dissipation level to ensure long life and stability.

Buried capacitance has been around for a long time but is also increasing. The ability for Electrical Test to accurately test this type of product is crucial. Accurately identifying and allowing the buried capacitance component, results in improved throughput and delivery. It also reduces unnecessary delays, troubleshooting and unfortunate scrap of product that is actually good.

Initially Published in the IPC Proceedings

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