Analysis Techniques

Analysis Techniques

There are many techniques used in analytical labouratory today, and many new ones are in the process of development. Each technique or method has its own usefulness but not without limitations, hence multiple approach is necessarily most of the times. By the correct understanding of instrument and technique used and coupled with experienced application, getting down to finding the root cause will not only be simpler but quicker. Call and discuss with us, we would be able to share some lights to your issue at hand

Showing 1–12 of 34 results

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    2D/3D X-RAY — X-RAY


    X-ray Microtomography is a Non-destructive Technique (NDT) used  x-rays to allow inspection at multiple magnifications, angles with X-ray source settings. In Semiconductor industry, it is commonly used to examine wire bonding, die attach voiding etc. In 3D Mode, the X-ray create cross-sections of a physical object and  recreate a virtual model (3D model) without destroying the original object. Hence in reality, virtually all tomography today is computed tomography.

    •Medical imaging
    •Internal dimension
    •Internal structuaral damaged/defects
    •Locating Shorts
    •Industrial computed tomography

    X-RAY data3 X-RAY data2 X-RAY data1

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    ATOMIC ABSORPTION SPECTROSCOPY is designed for the quantification of metal elements , and trace metal and trace inorganic elements present in environmental samples. It is done so by measuring absorbed radiation of free atoms of the element of interest and reading of the spectra produced when the sample is excited by radiation.

    The atoms absorb ultraviolet visible light and make transitions to a higher energy level. Atomic absorption methods measure the amount of energy in the form of photons of light that are absorbed by the sample. A detector measures the wavelengths of light transmitted by the sample, and compares them to the wavelengths which originally passed through the sample.

    A signal processor then integrates the changes in wavelength absorbed, which appear in the readout as peaks of energy absorption at discrete wavelengths. The energy required for an electron to leave an atom is known as ionisation energy and is specific to each chemical element. When an electron moves from one energy level to another within the atom, a photon is emitted. Atoms of an element emit a characteristic spectral line. Every atom has its own distinct pattern of wavelengths at which it will absorb energy, due to the unique configuration of electrons in its outer shell. This enables the qualitative analysis of a sample.

    AAS data

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    Atomic force microscopy (AFM)  is a very high-resolution, high-sensitive type of scanning probe microscopy capable of quantifying surface roughness down to angstrom-scale. It can performs qualitative mapping of physical properties, like electric fields, adhesion layers, dopant distribution, conductivity region, Thinfilm layer etc.

    •Three-dimensional surface topographic imaging
    •surface roughness, grain size, step height, and pitch
    •Imaging of other sample characteristics, likes magnetic field, capacitance, friction, and phase.

    AFM data


    Our analysis method is accordance to international standard:

    ASTM E2859 (Standard Guide for Size Measurement of Nanoparticles Using Atomic Force Microscopy)

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    Auger electron spectroscopy (AES) is a common chemical surface analysis method. It measures the chemical composition of the outermost 100 Å of specimen and all elements except for H and He can be detected. AES is working on the principle of excitation of atoms by electron beam that leads to the emission of Auger electrons.

    Auger electron spectroscopy is a very useful tools in Failure Analysis for elemental analysis of miniature surface features.  Some of the applications below:

    • Qualitative analysis through fingerprinting spectral analysis
    • Identification of different chemical states of elements
    • Determination of atomic concentration of elements
    • Depth profiling
    • Adsorption and chemisorption of gases on metal surfaces
    • A Interface analysis of materials deposited in situ on surfaces



    Our analysis method is accordance to international standard:

    ASTM E827-08 (Standard Practice for Identifying Elements by the Peaks in Auger Electron Spectroscopy)

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    Confocal Scanning Acoustic Microscopy, generally known as CSAM is a non-destructive (NDT) analysis equipment for detecting and imaging microscopic structures or defects inside a specimen. It is widely used in semiconductors and electronic components by use of the reflection and transmission properties of ultrasonic waves.  This technology has an outstanding benefit is its ability to find hidden defects within an  assembly that can occur during manufacturing or reliability testing. Defects such as fine cracks, voids, porosity and delaminations can be identified and analysed effectively using CSAM than many other NDT methods such as X-Ray or IR Imaging.  Because it is highly sensitive to the elastic properties of the materials it travels through.

    Having said that, C-SAM and X-ray techniques complement each other as most labs have both equipment for they reveal different features. Where X-ray relies on differential attenuation of the X-ray energy, CSAM relies on material change and is more sensitive in detecting air-pocket type defects such as cracks, voids and delaminations.

    CSAM data

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    Decapsulation is also known as Decapping or Delidding.  A FA step performed to open a plastic package to facilitate the  inspection, chemical analysis, or electrical examination of the die and the internal features of the package.  There are several methods available:

      • Manual Chemical Etching :  by using acid to remove the plastic material covering the die. A cavity is first milled on the top surface of the package. Either nitric acid (85°C) or sulfuric acid (140°C) is then repeatedly dropped into the cavity until the die exposed adequately.  The unit is then rinsed with acetone followed by D/I water, before being blow-dried.

    Chemical Decap

      • Mechanical Decap:  this method is employed mainly to avoid the corrosive nature of chemical and when foreign material within the package is of interest of analysis. This technique involves heating the package followed by grinding, breaking, and cutting to separate the top part of the package from its bottom part.  This technique destroys the bond wires but preserves the die if used properly.

    Mechanical Decap

      • Plasma Etching:  this method removes plastic by making it react with a gas which will then be vented out of the chamber. It is very clean and selective to the exact point of decap.

    Plasma Decap

      • Laser Decap:  using laser to ablate the plastic encapsulant material away from a device. Software programable with multiple laser wavelengths to achieve a clean removal of packages and selective.

    Laser Decap

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    The "dye and pry" technique, which relies on a liquid dye that penetrates into existing micro cracks or under open solder balls, is a destructive test method for the revealing of defects on the solder ball to pad interface (see figure below). On certain occasions some form of plus or minus pressure will be introduced.  After letting the dye dry, the BGA is "pryed" off its PCB and the solder balls are inspected for the presence of the dye which reveals any inter-facial connection problem areas.

    •Check BGA delamination
    Dye & Pry data



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    Electrical Verification Bench Testing


    Electrical Verification Bench Testing is a process to characterize the failure mode of a given sample using various bench equipment for exciting the device and measuring its responses. Since different test parameters require different test conditions, the bench test set-up varies every time a new test parameter needs to be characterized.  Hence failure verification may entail the use of several set-ups before the nature of device failure can be fully verified. Below are some examples :

    •Power supply & Multimeter
    •Frequency Counter
    •Curve - Tracer


    Curve - Tracer


    Frequency Counter

    Power supply & Multimeter

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    Electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) is an advance technique generally used with the Scanning Electron Microscope(SEM).  It provides quantitative micro-structural information about the crystallographic nature of semiconductor, metal, mineral, ceramic and even inorganic crystalline material. EBSD uses beam to unveal grain size, grain boundary character and orientation, texture, and phase identity of the specimen. Following are some typical applications:

    •Crystal orientation mapping.
    •Defect studies
    •Phase identification
    •Grain boundary and morphology studies
    •Regional heterogeneity investigations

    EBSD data

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    Electron Energy Loss Spectroscopy (EELS)


    Electron Energy Loss Spectroscopy (EELS) is a high-sensitivity, non-destructive technique (NDT) for analysing surface and low-energy electronic excitation.  It collects more signals than EDS and is ideal for Elemental identification and mapping. EELS is commonly used with STEM to provide elemental information on the Nanometer Scale.

    With the advantage of better signal detection, less sensitive to noise and greater spatial resolution at 1nm, EELS is specially useful for N/Si/C/O analysis. Although the equipment is usually takes longer to set up and at times require several set ups, but our experience can overcome those issues.

    EELS data

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    ELECTRON SPECTROSCOPY FOR CHEMICAL ANALYSIS(ESCA) is also known as X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy(XPS). This method measures the very top surface chemistry of any material with the depth of about 10nm. The detection cover most elements except for Hydrogen(H) and Helium(He) , oxide thickness measurement at approximately 0.01 atom %.  Long detection time is required for it to achieve ppm level.

    ESCA is commonly used for analysis of semiconductors, metal alloys, polymers, elements, catalysts, glasses, ceramics, paints, inorganic compounds, plastics, papers, inks, woods, plant parts, make-up materials, teeth, bones, medical implant, bio-materials etc.

    In the testing environment only those electrons that escaped from the sample surface into the vacuum chamber and reach the detector will be detected. Therefore, a photo-electron must travel through the sample to make it happen. Photo-emitting electrons can undergo inelastic collisions, recombination, excitation of the sample, recapture or trapping in various excited states within the material, all of these can reduce the number of escaping electrons.


    Click on below to see the instrument specification for this analysis>>

    ESCALAB 250 XPS Microprobe

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    Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy  is an analytical technique used for the elemental analysis or chemical characterization of a sample. It relies on the investigation of an interaction of some source of X-ray excitation and a sample

    •Identification of elemental composition of small areas
    •Mapping of elements present in sample

    EDX data


    Our test methods are in compliance with International StandardASTM E1508-12a (Standard Guide for Quantitative Analysis by Energy-Dispersive Spectroscopy)

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