Multi-contact probe addresses small pad probing - Embedded.com

Multi-contact probe addresses small pad probing

European Microwave Week: Cascade Microtech has developed the InfinityQuad probe to ensures reliable measurement results up to 110 GHz in the engineering and production of DC, logic, RF and mmWave RFIC devices.

Multi-contact probes are needed today to test devices with multiple inputs and outputs and full ‘quadrant’ solutions are traditionally made from different probe technologies and ‘bent’ to fit says Anthony Lord of Cascade Microtech meaning that they often have limited performance – well below what is desired. Another problem says Lord is that design and delivery is slow, slowing down time-to-market and providing 'messy’ and incomplete solutions.

InfinityQuad is a multi-contact quadrant probe which uses a fabricated coupon tip technology and is fully configurable with up to 25 contacts defined as either DC, logic, ground, RF or mm-wave with an array of standard pitches.

The probe uses the same technology as the Infinity Probes and Pyramid-MW probe cards and uses a photo-lithographically defined fine-pitch tip structure to enable automatic, over-temperature probing of pads as small as 30 μm x 50 μm with minimum pad damage, and provides consistent, low contact resistance. Fine-pitch probe tips enable probing of pitches as small as 75 μm.

InfinityQuad provides microstrip transmission lines to probe tip, high density of signals and DC/logic, tight pitch signals and superior fringing control and overall RF performance.

It has a contact area of 12 x 8 μm and a first to last overtravel of 10 μm, a <50 W contact resistance and parallel skating. The tips are all skating in parallel to each other, there is zero side skate. Probe life is quoted as over 250,000 cycles with minimal maintenance. A design capture tool reduces the chance of design errors and enables faster delivery. The number of contacts is from  4 to 25 and the number of ‘premium’ channels is up to four 40, 50, 67 or 110 GHz and the available contact pitch is 75, 80, 100, 125, 150, 200 and 250 μm. The InfinityQuad enhanced probe mount includes a method to accurately adjust the yaw-axis to ensure the probe correctly aligns to the pads. This method is more simple and precise to set up, saving time and improving probing accuracy. InfinityQuad probes can be configured online with an intuitive form enabling the configuration of pitch and number of contact and contact types. Supplied accessories include one-meter long cable, 0.05 inch pitch 2×25 connector (probe side) to 0.1 inch pitch 2×25 female connector (instrument side), upgradable power or logic channels with optional one-meter long coax lines with SMA male or BNC male connector (instrument side), 2×25 0.1 inch pitch male – male adapter, metric and imperial mounting hardware and a cable strain relief kit.

The InfinityQuad probes are fully quadrant compatible with Cascade Microtech probe stations, MicroChamber and ProbeShield technologies, and also compatible in a quadrant arrangement with other Cascade Microtech quadrant-compatible probes.

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