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PACE Technologies Metallographic Preparation CLASS Chart icon

Silicon Substrate
Specimen Preparation (Class 4 Procedures)
Metallographic Class 4 sample preparation  

Specimen preparation of friable or brittle materials such as silicon offer a microstructural preparation challenge. Proper microstructural preparation of these materials must minimize fracturing the silicon structure. This is accomplished by first by cutting or sectioning with fine grit / low concentration diamond blades. Oftentimes microelectronic cross sections are not encapsulated and just mounted using a hot melt tape. If the specimens are encapsulated, a castable mounting compound such as an acrylic or an epoxy is recommended. Initial grinding and polishing with diamond lapping films is required to prevent undue damage to the silicon during grinding. Rough polishing is accomplished on low napped polishing cloths using diamond, with final polishing for a very short time on a high napped cloth using collodial silica.

SECTIONING
Diamond Wafering blade - fine grit / low concentration

MOUNTING

Hot melt tape or castable mounting with Epoxy or Acrylic resins

POLISHING
Abrasive/surface Lubricant Force/ sample Speed
(Head/base)
Time Individual
Force mode
Central Force
mode
30 um Diamond Lapping Film*
POLYLUBE Diamond
Extender
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm Planar

  Metallographic central polishing force
15 um Diamond Lapping Film*
POLYLUBE Diamond
Extender
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm 3 min Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force
9 um Diamond Lapping Film*
POLYLUBE Diamond
Extender
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm 2 min Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force
6 um Diamond Lapping Film*
POLYLUBE Diamond
Extender
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm 2 min Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force
3 um Diamond Lapping Film*
POLYLUBE Diamond
Extender
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm 2 min Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force
1 um DIAMAT diamond
on ATLANTIS polishing pad
DIALUBE Purple
Lubricant
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm 1 min Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force
MICROPAD or MICROPAD 2
polishing pad
Colloidal silica 5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm 30 sec Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force

*Required for central polishing force. Click here for more information on central vs. individual polishing force polishing.

Metallographic cutting with fine grit diamond wafering blade Metallographic diamond cutting with incorrect wafering blade
Fine grit diamond wafering blade Medium grit diamond wafering blade
Electronic package Electronic package
Electronic package Electronic package

ETCHING

Common Etchants
PACE Technologies Recommended Etchants

PACE Technologies Etchant Database

CAUTION:Safety is very important when etching. Be sure to wear the appropriate protective clothing and observe all WARNINGS on chemical manufacuters SDS (Safety Data Sheets). Also review the COMMENTS and CONDITIONS Section for each etchant.


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