Patent Issued for Probe Card Having Configurable Structure for Exchanging Or Swapping Electronic Components for Impedance Matching and Impedance Matching Method Therefore
The patent's inventors are Huang, Chao-Ching (Hsinchu Hsiang, TW); Ho, Chih-Hao (Hsinchu Hsiang, TW); Ku, Wei-Cheng (Hsinchu Hsiang, TW).
This patent was filed on
From the background information supplied by the inventors, news correspondents obtained the following quote: "A probe card is used as a signal transmission interface between a tester and a device under test. In order to efficiently transmit high-frequency test signals, the impedance value of the probe card must be identical or similar to that of the tester and the device under test (DUT).
"A plurality of known conventional methods is used to achieve the above purpose. For example, the quantity of conductive soldered joints in the probe card are changed that can make the impedance value of the probe card identical or similar to that of the tester and the DUT. As another example, the probe card with a plurality of coaxial probes can improve electrical transmission capacity by lowering the parasitic capacitance between the coaxial probes. In yet another example, the impedance value of the probe card is adjusted to be consistent with that of the tester and the DUT by exchanging/swapping electronic components with different impedance value.
"The above described method could help in achieving the above purpose, but leave much to be desired. For instance, in the exchanging or swapping process of electronic components, the electronic component (e.g. an. inductor) is directly welded with the conductive contact pad so as to be electrically connected. Therefore, when the measured impedance value of the probe card is not close to that of the tester and the DUT, and is higher than a predetermined value, the solder must be removed before the electronic component is taken off, and followed by welding a new electronic component having a different impedance value on the probe card for completing the exchanging/swapping process of the electronic components.
"However, in the operations for removing solder and for welding electronic component, the operational difficulties leads to the exchanging/swapping process to become more burdensome thereby lowering the efficiency of the electrical testing. In addition, in the process of mounting the new electronic component, the aligning of the tiny electronic component with the conductive contact pad on the printed circuit board is not an easy task, and thus making more difficult on the exchanging/swapping process. Furthermore, the electronic component is prone to be damaged during the solder removing and welding procedures. Therefore, due to the operational difficulties and the desire for efficient electrical testing, there is still room for improvement in matching the impedance value of the probe card with that of the tester and the DUT by exchanging/swapping the electronic components."
Supplementing the background information on this patent, VerticalNews reporters also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "In view of the foregoing, it is the primary object of this invention to provide a probe card having a configurable structure for exchanging electronic components for impedance matching, and an impedance matching method therefore. As a result, the speed for exchanging or swapping the electronic component can be faster so as to improve the efficiency of the electrical testing.
"To achieve the foregoing object, an impedance matching method for probe card is provided. The impedance matching method includes the following steps: (a) providing a supporting unit for a probe card having a surface on which at least one conductive contact pad and at least one electronic component are mounted, and the electronic component is pressed by an applied force, and is electrically connected with the conductive contact pad, (b) mounting the probe card which contains the supporting unit described in step (a) between a tester and a device under test, © electrically testing an impedance value between the tester and the device under test through the probe card, and performing an exchanging/swapping process of the electronic component of probe card upon determining that the measured impedance value is not equal to a predetermined value, and the exchanging/swapping process of the electronic component comprising: removing the applied force; replacing the current electronic component from the supporting unit with another (new) electronic component having a different impedance value; re-exerting the applied force on the new electronic component to ensure that the electronic component is electrically connected with the conductive contact pad; (d) repeating step © until the measured impedance value being equal to the predetermined value.
"To achieve the foregoing object, a probe card having a configurable structure for exchanging electronic components for impedance matching is provided for incorporation with the above-described method. The probe card includes a supporting unit, at least one electronic component, and a pressing device. The supporting unit has a surface which defines at least one mounting area, and at least one conductive contact pad is disposed in the mounting area. The electronic component is disposed in the mounting area and has a conductive end on the bottom. The pressing device is used for exerting an applied force so as to make the conductive end of the electronic component tightly contacted with the conductive contact pad of the supporting unit.
"In the probe card, the pressing device comprises a pressing plate which is configured to be moved between a pressing position and a non-pressing position. The pressing plate has a pressing surface which is contacted with a top end of the electronic component while the pressing plate is in the pressing position. Because of the downwardly applied force, the electronic component is reliably electrically connected to the conductive contact pad.
"In the probe card, a position alignment element is provided. The position alignment element has at least one opening which is aligned with the conductive contact pad, and is used for containing the electronic component. Because the electronic component can be aligned quickly with the conductive contact pad, the operational efficiency is improved.
"In the probe card, at least one placement seat which is disposed on the supporting unit is provided. The placement seat has at least one hollowing portion that is corresponding to the mounting area. The pressing device has a pressing plate which is attached with the placement seat. In reference with respect to The pressing plate is configured to be moved between a pressing position and a non-pressing position in reference with respect to the placement seat. The pressing plate has a pressing surface which is contacted with a top end of the electronic component while the pressing plate is in the pressing position.
"In the probe card, a stiffener, which is combined with the supporting unit, is provided. The stiffener is used to strengthen the rigidity of the supporting unit. Further more, the placement seat is joined with the stiffener.
"The above and other aspects, features, and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings."
For the URL and additional information on this patent, see: Huang, Chao-Ching; Ho, Chih-Hao; Ku, Wei-Cheng. Probe Card Having Configurable Structure for Exchanging Or Swapping Electronic Components for Impedance Matching and Impedance Matching Method Therefore. U.S. Patent Number 8638116, filed
Keywords for this news article include:
Our reports deliver fact-based news of research and discoveries from around the world. Copyright 2014, NewsRx LLC
Most Popular Stories
- SoCalGas Reaches Record Spend on Diversity Suppliers
- Senators Reach Deal on Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac
- GM Recall Poses First Major Test for New CEO
- Deborah Hersman Quits NTSB
- Biden Considers Mediation in Venezuela
- Swedish Journalist Nils Horner Shot Dead in Kabul
- Bob Crow Remembered as Shrewd Champion of Union Workers
- 'Titanfall' XBox Debut Has Microsoft Fired Up
- Job Openings Less Than Expected in January
- El Empleo Rebota: La Columna Cohen