Keithley Launches C-V Measurement Instrument For Semiconductor Characterization System

Source: Keithley Instruments, Inc.

Cleveland -- Keithley Instruments, Inc. announces a new C-V measurement instrument for its powerful Model 4200-SCS Semiconductor Characterization System. The Model 4200-CVU instrument comes as a module that plugs into any available instrument slot of the Model 4200-SCS, allowing fast and easy capacitance measurements from femtoFarads (fF) to nanoFarads (nF), at frequencies from 10kHz to 10MHz. Developed with the most modern and high performance circuitry available, the Model 4200-CVU has eight patents pending on its innovative design. This design provides intuitive point-and-click setup, simple cabling, and built-in element models that eliminate the guesswork in obtaining valid C-V measurements. Users of all experience levels can perform C-V tests as if they were experts.

The Model 4200-CVU includes the most extensive set of test libraries available, greatly increasing test efficiency. Even more efficiency is possible with Keithley's Model 4200-LS-LC-12, a special switch matrix and card with cables and adapters that enable tightly integrated C-V/I-V testing with a single prober touchdown. The optional Model 4200-PROBER-KIT allows easy connection of the Model 4200-SCS to the most widely used probers. The net result is comprehensive C-V testing that is as easy to set up and run as I-V tests.

With these latest additions to its 4200-SCS line, Keithley has taken the lead in C-V instrumentation and now satisfies the widest range of applications served by a single semiconductor test instrument, covering a broad array of probers, device types, process technologies, and measurement methodologies – including pulse I-V. The Model 4200-CVU and optional modules solve the problems of other characterization systems that either do not provide integrated C-V/I-V/pulse, or have limited support in their user interfaces and software libraries. Moreover, the system's flexible and powerful test execution engine makes it simple to combine I-V, C-V, and pulsed tests into the same test sequence. Therefore, the Model 4200-SCS can replace a variety of electrical test tools with a single, tightly integrated characterization solution.

Nonetheless, Keithley's Model 4200-SCS will continue to support C-V/I-V/pulse and other test methodologies utilizing a variety of third party instruments. These characteristics make the 4200-SCS/CVU solution the ideal choice for:

  • Semiconductor technology development/process development/reliability labs
  • Materials and device research labs and consortia
  • Any lab needing a benchtop DC or pulse instrument
  • Most semi labs and users needing multi-use/multi-instruments in a small form factor

The Model 4200-SCS has always had the most intuitive Windows-based interface (GUI) of any semiconductor characterization system on the market. Developed from many years of customer interaction and feedback, this ease of use continues with the new Model 4200-CVU hardware and software modules, which are a natural extension of its interactive test environment and execution engine. Keithley supports the Model 4200-CVU hardware with an extensive set of sample programs, test libraries, and built-in parameter extraction examples ready to run right out of the box. The eight software libraries provide the broadest range of C-V test and analysis available. They cover all the standard applications, including C-V, C-t, and C-f measurement and analysis for high and low K structures, MOSFETs, BJTs, diodes, flash memory, photovoltaic cells, III-V compound devices, and carbon nanotube (CNT) devices. Besides junction, pin-to-pin, and interconnect capacitance, the analysis and parameter extraction software yields doping profiles, TOX, mobile ions, and carrier lifetime. These tests include various linear and custom C-V sweeps, as well as C vs. time and C vs. frequency.

Unlike other characterization systems, the Keithley C-V/I-V analysis and extraction programs operate in a well-documented open environment, allowing users to easily make modifications and customize their routines. Integrated sample projects, developed from the deep application knowledge of Keithley engineers, help shorten program development time.

The Model 4200-CVU also comes with a variety of advanced diagnostic tools to help ensure the validity of C-V test results. Uncertain if a test result is accurate? Just click the on-screen "Confidence Check" button, or use the real-time front panel to isolate portions of the test setup for validation.

The well proven capabilities of the Model 4200-SCS provide the best user experience with the shortest learning curve. It solves the problems faced by semiconductor lab managers when striving to increase productivity and efficiency in device characterization and modeling.

Much of the credit for the Model 4200-CVU's exceptional measurement accuracy, speed, and efficiency is due to the Model 4200-SCS's high speed digital measurement hardware and tight hardware and software integration, as well as Keithley's adherence to low-noise system design principles. This combination of strengths means the Model 4200-CVU can improve users' productivity significantly, whether the task is as simple as setting up a single measurement or running a preset test sequence with a single mouse-click, or as sophisticated as triggering and plotting multiple C-V sweeps. The system's high speed digital architecture means the Model 4200-CVU can run and plot C-V sweeps in real time faster than any competitive C-V meter.

In addition to I-V/C-V/pulse testing in one flexible, fully integrated test environment, Model 4200-SCS users have several other options. These include a choice of up to eight medium- or high-power DC source-measure units (SMUs), dual-channel pulse and waveform generators, and an integrated digital oscilloscope. Like the Model 4200-CVU, all of these instruments plug into the Model 4200-SCS instrument slots and are controlled by the powerful Keithley Test Environment Interactive (KTEI, version 7.0) software environment. This point-and-click interface streamlines test setup, test sequence control, and data analysis. KTEI can also control a variety of external instruments, including most probers, hot chucks, and test fixtures, as well as Keithley's high integrity switch matrices, which provide the widest connection flexibility available in the industry.

Many instrument manufacturers produce a continuous stream of products that are not compatible with each other, and a new product often signals the end of a previous offering – leaving no investment protection. Keithley's policy of continual hardware and software upgrades to the Model 4200-SCS means that the Model 4200-CVU module, along with all associated software and optional hardware, can be retrofitted to the first Model 4200-SCS ever built. This easy upgrade path eliminates the need to buy a new parametric analyzer every few years to keep pace with innovations in device or materials technology. Systems can be upgraded cost-effectively to keep up with the industry's evolving test needs, so capital investments in the Model 4200-SCS stretch much further than in competitive test solutions. Furthermore, external hardware and test program development is held to a minimum.

SOURCE: Keithley Instruments, Inc.