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TriState pulse measurement technique for memory effects on GaN devices | Innovations for wave load pull from 10 MHz to 220 GHz

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Non-Contact Contacting | Non-Contacting Probe Stations

With short millimetre waves, for example in the frequency range from 300 to 1200 GHz, contacting semiconductor components with traditional RF probes is becoming increasingly difficult and in many cases leads to measurement results that can hardly be reproduced. At such high frequencies, it is necessary to keep the pad structures very small in order to maintain mono mode. On these, the RF probes, usually with GSG tips, must establish an electrically conductive contact with the pad metallization. Even slight deviations in the position or contact pressure of the probes often lead to significant deviations in the measurement results.

In addition, for measurements with network analysers, a calibration on a calibration substrate must be carried out beforehand. This is a significant source of error that affects the overall measurement accuracy. A further problem is the rapid wear of the test probes and the pads of the test specimen and calibration substrate due to multiple contacting. This is caused by the so-called slide-in, in which the scratch marks of the test probes indicate to the experimenter whether a contact has already been made. It is therefore also difficult to keep a “golden device” for verification of the measurement set-up alive for a long time.

With the non-contact probe station of our partner TERAPROBES you can avoid all these problems and achieve a very high reliability for both calibration and measurement. For this purpose, the semiconductor device receives lithographically produced coupling antennas at its RF input and output. These antennas are used to adjust bundled, quasi-optical mm wave radiation. These include mm wave modules, antennas for conversion into a bidirectional quasi-optical beam and focusing deflecting mirrors. Uncritical DC connections are contacted as before with DC needles. Preferably, identical calibration structures are produced together with the antennas of the test object directly on the wafer.

We would be pleased to offer you our individual consulting service for the realization of the antenna structures and work out a proposal regarding the required measuring instruments. If necessary, we also check the integration of your existing instruments, regardless of the manufacturer.

All in all, TERAPROBES offers you maximum safety, time and cost savings through highly accurate, reproducible measurements without wear, as the RF path is contact-free. After a test phase lasting several years, NIST, the American National Institute of Standards and Technology, is also one of the customers of a non-contact probe station.

Automatic non-contacting mm wave probe station by TERAPROBES Inc.
Automatische berührungslose (Non-Contacting) mmWellen Probe Station von TERAPROBES Inc.
mm wave modules with antennas and quasi-optical deflecting mirrors

The following probe station solutions are available or planned:

Availability and expansion level

Available: Manual probe station

Planned and under development: Automatic probe station

Product designation

TP-100-M8025

TP-100-A8025

Mechanics

Coupling is manually adjusted using fine micro-manipulators

Automatic coupling with stepper motors and SW for the control

Frequency range

50 GHz - 1.2 THz

(limited by the currently available VNA modules, the quasi-optical components may have to be adapted to the measurement frequency band)

50 GHz - 1.2 THz

(limited by the currently available VNA modules, the quasi-optical components may have to be adapted to the measurement frequency band)

Repeatability of phase deviation

Approx. 0.6 - 0.7° typical at 625 GHz

Values not yet available

Repeatability of amplitude deviation

Approx. 0.74% typical at 625 GHz

Values not yet available

Dynamic range

> 80 dB typical

(with TxRx WR2.2 and WR1.5 VNA modules from Virginia Diodes; depending on the quality of the calibration and the IF measurement bandwidth)

Target: > 80 dB

(with TxRx WR2.2 and WR1.5 VNA modules from Virginia Diodes; depending on the quality of the calibration and the IF measurement bandwidth)

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Here you get a quick visual impression: