SOURCE: Cascade Microtech

Cascade Microtech

May 05, 2011 09:00 ET

Cascade Microtech Introduces New Viper Probe Card for High-Volume Test of Wafer-Level Chip-Scale Packages

BEAVERTON, OR--(Marketwire - May 5, 2011) - Cascade Microtech, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCD), a leading expert at precision measurements at the wafer level, today announced the first in the series of Viper™ probe cards. Viper probe cards will be used for test of high-volume production wafer-level chip-scale packaged devices (WLCSP). Viper's unique probe pin is integrated into Cascade Microtech's patented laminated housing technology to deliver consistent and superior electrical results that improve production yields and reduce overall cost-of-ownership.

In smart phones, combo chips provide Bluetooth, WLAN, near-field communication and digital TV functionality. Combo chips predominantly use chip-scale and WLCSP packaging techniques, which demand high-performance Known-Good-Die (KGD) testing. WLCSP is the fastest-growing package style, and demand is outpacing the available market capacity. According to Yole Developpement, WLCSP accounts for more than 6 percent of all IC packages worldwide, and growth is expected to reach 15-20 percent within the next decade. These packages are found in all mobile phones (smart phone to low-end) which are forecast to experience unit growth in 2011 of 10.4 percent (iSuppli). The WLCSP market is dominated by optical, analog, and RF wafer-level package applications. IC manufacturers need cost-effective production strategies that ensure the highest quality, and to keep pace with demand to reduce the total test cost of ownership.

Cascade Microtech's new Viper probe card is an affordable multi-site solution with the unique capability that allows customers to easily scale from x1 to x8 and beyond on a per-die basis as production ramps, without changes to the layout of the probe card. Unlike traditional spring pin solutions, the Viper architecture features patented housing that ensures the pin is retained, providing superior tip position accuracy needed to attain consistent contact resistance and low inductance to deliver predictable results and higher yields. The patented non-rotating pin reduces PCB pad wear, delivering a longer probe card lifetime. Individual contact engines are replaceable on a per-DUT basis requiring no special tools or microscopes, significantly reducing downtime and labor costs, and accelerating time-to-market compared to other competitive technologies. The Viper probe head can also be configured with the 'Accel™' option which allows for individual die testing, shortening test program development and enabling re-test of individual die.

"Traditional spring pin technologies on the market today fall short in their ability to deliver the test costs and performance required to meet our customer's needs," said Michael Burger, president and CEO, Cascade Microtech, Inc. "With the new Viper probe card, our customers can better address the complexities of testing emerging wafer-level chip-scale packages that require KGD measurement capabilities in a way that will not only meet the technology challenge, but will deliver improvements in overall yield and cost-of-ownership."

About Cascade Microtech, Inc.
Cascade Microtech, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCD) is a worldwide leader in the precise electrical and mechanical measurement and test of integrated circuits (ICs) and other small structures. For technology businesses and scientific institutions that need to evaluate small structures, Cascade Microtech delivers access to electrical data from wafers, ICs, IC packages, circuit boards and modules, MEMS, 3D TSV, LED devices and more. Cascade Microtech's leading-edge semiconductor production test products include unique probe cards and test sockets that reduce manufacturing costs of high-speed and high-density semiconductor chips. For more information visit