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From the beginning of their shaping until their final assembly into useful devices and systems, semiconductor wafers are subject to several kinds of failure, one of which is brittle fracture. The purpose of this paper is to describe the method of tracing cracks in silicon slices back to their origins and of further analyzing the fracture by means of characteristic fracture markings. Some background material in fracture theory and the causes of various markings is also presented.
Fracture markings, wafer fracture, fracture tracing, silicon breakage
Member of Technical Staff, Silicon Slice Processing Department at Texas Instruments Incorporated, Sherman, TX