University of Illinois turns to Tektronix to outfit nanofabrication lab

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has purchased three Keithley 4200A-SCS Parameter Analysers and three 4200A-CVIV Multi-Switch Modules from Tektronix for a first-of-its-kind undergraduate nanofabrication lab intended to give students hands-on experience with micro- and nano-electronics. The 4200A-SCS is a modular, fully integrated parameter analyzer for performing electrical characterization of materials, semiconductor devices and processes. The 4200A-CVIV provides an error-proof method of switching between DC and AC measurements and moving AC measurements to any terminal of the test device.

Illinois is in the process of setting up a nanofab lab at its ECE Building, a new 230,000 square foot facility with more than 20 lab spaces dedicated to giving students hands-on training in electronics and computing. The university selected the 4200A-SCS for the nanofab lab because it wanted equipment that students and new users can immediately use with minimal training. Recently introduced, the 4200A-SCS emphasises usability with features such as:

  • Guidance on measurements with embedded YouTube-like videos in Chinese, English, Japanese and Korean on how to set-up, perform and troubleshoot tests as well as application notes and webinars
  • Over 450 ready-to-use, user-modifiable application tests and devices that jumpstart test plan development
  • Visual test plan development and test sequencing tools
  • An integrated confidence check that gives users confirmation when a probe has contacted wafer pads

“The Keithley 4200A-SCS proved to offer the ideal combination of advanced parametric capabilities and usability,” said Dane Sievers, an instructor and coordinator for the new lab. “In fact, the operation of the instrument is so intuitive and accessible that we were able to start using it even before we received training.”

Consisting of Source Measure Units for I-V characterisation, Capacitance-Voltage module for AC impedance measurements, and an Ultra-fast Pulse Measure Unit that performs pulsed I-V, waveform capture, and transient I-V measurements, the 4200A-SCS provides the researcher or engineer with critical parameters needed for materials research, semiconductor device design, development or production.

“We went to great lengths to make the 4200A-SCS exceptionally easy to set up and easy to learn even for users with no prior experience with a parameter analyser,” said Mike Flaherty, general manager, Keithley product line at Tektronix. “The 4200A-SCS’s usability makes it ideal for teaching labs such as what Illinois is building as well as for applications such as semiconductor device research, device failure analysis and reliability testing where it is a shared resource among multiple users.”

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