ZeptoBars - RSS feed http://zeptobars.com/en/ Microelectronics. Die-shots. Artificial intelligence. Lasers. en-us Tue, 10 Jun 2006 04:00:00 GMT Fri, 25 Sep 20 19:48:39 +0300 webmaster@zeptobars.com 120 10 <![CDATA[Motorola 2N5109 - NPN RF BJT 1.2Ghz fT : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/Motorola-2N5109-npn-RF-BJT

Sat, 12 Sep 20 20:53:30 +0300
<![CDATA[Behind the scene of Zeptobars - 2020Q3]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/Behind-the-scene-of-Zeptobars-2020Q3-Switzerland-Russia-Zurich-Moscow You might have noticed, that there were extremely few posts in the blog over the last months. Well, it was COVID-related, but in slightly unexpected way.

As you know, I was in Moscow, Russia all these years. It was planned that in 2020 I will gradually relocate to Switzerland, move my whole lab, spend more and more time at new place closer to the end of the year.

Well, it did not happened this way. Daily coronavirus cases started to spike across Europe, and by May - all borders were closed. I ended up on 1-way evacuation flight from Russia with very short notice, organized by Switzerland embassy. Even 8 hours before departure - it was not certain if flight will happen at all. As we later learned - it was the last flight in the following 2.5 months.

I gathered 2 suitcases, and there was so much one can fit. I took shirts, 2 best microscope lenses, few decapsulated & previously imaged sample chips for first tests at new place, NVMe drive from my desktop - and that's mostly it.

In the airport it was easy to get to the right gate - it was the only flight out this day:

It will take much more logistics & efforts to continue chip decapsulation & imaging at new place - with full capabilities probably closer to the end of the year.

With that - It could be a good time to show how Zeptolab-2 looked like in Moscow. Here you can see 2 main microscopes : stereo + Olympus BX60. My older Chinese microscope is hidden on the shelves.

This is where etching was happening. Box on the left - small acid storage. Device near it - semi-automatic HF etching oven (with programmed temperature profiles). On the right - place where 95% of the chips were etched, with minimal possible amount of 100-102% sulfuric acid, but on open flame. Flame is surely dangerous, but due to high etching speed - I can always monitor 100% of the process.

Safety notes: Open flame around so much wood is not a good idea. I am really starting to value non-flammable materials everywhere in a workshop. Fire extinguishers nearby are essential (and I had 2 around).
        Over the years I had 2 test tubes cracked this way (surely, with acid). In both cases it was when I was using jet torch. Fortunately, it was just cracks with no acid splashing around. This proves once again that full PPE is mandatory when working with acid, and anything could happen without warning. No test tubes cracked since I switched to camping stove with "soft" flame. Also I used quartz test tubes for some time which also proved to be very reliable - but they are quite rare.

Here on the left - "modern" liquid waste storage (neutralized by NaOH - no gas products), in the middle - "old" solid waste storage (neutralized by baking soda - could foam due to CO2), on the right - etching box from Zeptolab-1. It was only used rarely for very large chip packages during last years.

It was used to do very first etchings at Zeptobars 8 years ago (you can see it in 2012 article "How to «open» microchip and what's inside?"), and it surely has seen it's fair share of acid spills & boil-overs (typically caused by overshooting acid boiling temperature or getting too much water from plastic which lowers boiling temperature). Everything is covered in baking soda. Initially I bought 2 of these solder heaters, as I was anticipating first one to fail eventually. But it survived everything.

I will be slowly recovering decapsulation & imaging capabilities at Zeptolab-3 in Zürich by the end of this year, hopefully including laser decapsulation.

Meanwhile, if you have some assortment of ICs in metal cases and could send them to me - it could help to close the gap and keep the blog alive.
You can send a short note, your name/link to refer to in the article and ICs to:

Mikhail Svarycheuski
Rudigerstrasse 7
8045 Zurich

Thanks for your continued support! Without it Zeptobars might have not survived 3rd relocation.

PS. Why red color on first photo? Lamps are cyan-corrected white + rgb for work with photopolymers/analog photography. Red was enabled just to make it unusual. Typically it is illuminated in white with corrected spectrum (spectrum hole near cyan is "covered").]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 20 18:49:46 +0300
<![CDATA[Motorola MWA120 - hybrid 0.4GHz RF amplifier : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/Motorola-MWA120-RF-amplifier-400-hybrid

Thermal damage visible around resistor trim lines. Back in the days it could have even been CW laser, not ps/fs luxury we have now.

Update: Closer look at brutal trim line (~15µm wide) - molten metal splashed everywhere.
Resistors are thin-film Tantalum, rest of conductors is Gold. Ceramic substrate is alumina.
Mon, 07 Sep 20 06:30:55 +0300
<![CDATA[National LM308AH - operational amplifier : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/National-LM308AH-LM108-operational-amplifier-opamp

Tue, 01 Sep 20 04:41:09 +0300
<![CDATA[Power Integrations INN2605K - ACDC without optocoupler : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/Power-Integrations-INN2605K-FluxLink-ACDC INN2605K is molded in fairly complex surface-mount package. FluxLink (internal magnetic feedback) seems to be made using leadframe & bondwires.

Primary side die:

Secondary side die:

FluxLink seems to be using right side of the leadframe, some bondwires are now missing:

Sat, 01 Aug 20 15:21:03 +0300
<![CDATA[ST HCF40105BE - 16x4 FIFO : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/ST-HCF40105BE-16x4-FIFO-fake-164-40105

Mon, 16 Mar 20 05:49:28 +0300
<![CDATA[Decawave DW1000 - ultra-wideband transceiver : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/Decawave-DW1000-UWB-ultra-wideband-IEEE802.15.4-2011 Decawave DW1000 is an ultra-wideband transceiver in 3.5 GHz to 6.5 GHz range, with channel bandwidths of 500/900 MHz (IEEE802.15.4-2011).

Die size 3190x3288 µm.

Wed, 11 Mar 20 03:08:14 +0300
<![CDATA[National LF444 - Quad JFET opamp : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/National-LF444-Quad-JFET-opamp-low-power
Sun, 01 Mar 20 04:11:12 +0300
<![CDATA[BF862 - low-noise N-Channel JFET : real vs fake : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/BF862-low-noise-N-Channel-JFET-J-FET-AM-preamp-2Ap Genuine part first, from reliable EU supplier. SMD marking 2AW 6o. Die size 358x358 µm. Die crack is on me.

Rarely we need to look closer at transistors:

Now fake one, SOT-23 marking 2Ap 48 from random Chinese online seller, claiming to sell genuine part. I've also got one even more fake with KN marking, did not even bothered to decap, must have been some random transistor they had laying around. Identified by Jeroen Ponte as probably counterfeit - which is especially likely as NXP stopped production of the original part. Die size 426x399 µm.

Linearity will definitely be degraded with fake part, especially at higher output currents. Cannot say anything about noise though. ]]>
Fri, 28 Feb 20 00:26:56 +0300
<![CDATA[Guangdong Hottech BC848C - Genuine Chinese BJT : weekend die-shot]]> http://zeptobars.com/en/read/Guangdong-Hottech-BC848C-Genuine-Chinese-BJT-npn Guangdong Hottech BC848C - general purpose BJT, made in China, and sold as a genuine Chinese product by lcsc.com. Layout is typical, metalization lithography is somewhat rough, not sure if it affects performance.

Die size 284x284 µm.

Sat, 22 Feb 20 21:40:52 +0300