Wow! The Burn-in and Test Strategy (BiTS) Workshop just turned 15! The world of semiconductors has certainly changed over the years. And the BiTS Workshop has kept up with what is “Now & Next” in the burn-in and test of packaged integrated circuits (ICs). These achievements were celebrated in style by the more than three hundred participants at the recently held 2014 BiTS Workshop in Mesa, Arizona.
“When the BiTS Workshop started in 2000, there were no practical forums for test engineers and managers to discuss solutions to the challenges of burn-in and test,” said Fred Taber, BiTS Workshop General Chairman. “BiTS has become the premier global go-to resource to learn what works in test and burn-in. International interest has continued to increase as forty percent of the attendees were from overseas. From consumables – such as sockets, load & burn-in boards, and wafer-level chip scale packaging (WLCSP) probe cards – to capital equipment – to new test strategies, we have it all.”
The excellent technical program spanned three days with twenty two papers plus three featured speakers and two poster sessions. Sunday, the Tutorial Day, started with Peter Ehlig (Texas Instruments Fellow) “Test 101: A Holistic View of Test” followed by a TechTalk by Jeffrey L. Roehr (Texas Instruments) “The Most Common Mistakes in Test”. These extended in-depth presentations were greatly appreciated by everyone.
Two excellent market overviews examining trends in package technology “book-ended” the technical program. The Distinguished Speaker Brandon Prior (Prismark Partners) kicked things off Sunday night with “Packaging And Interconnect Trends: QFN, WLCSP, Fine Pitch And Modular/3D Solutions.” Invited Speaker E. Jan Vardaman (TechSearch International) closed the program Wednesday with “Trends in Wafer Level Packaging: Thin is In!”
In his Keynote Address, “Interconnectology – The Road to 3D”, Simon McElrea (Invensas Corporation) explained the drivers for advanced packaging including next generation package-on-package (PoP) and 2.5/3D integration technology. As classical photolithography scaling no longer provides the cost savings required at advanced nodes to keep track with Moore’s Law, advanced packaging enables greater functionality at lower costs.
There was plenty to explore at the BiTS EXPO. For the fifth year in a row, the EXPO sold-out early with fifty-one exhibitors, requiring expansion into an adjacent ballroom. In addition to meeting with the exhibitors, attendees enjoyed great food and drink during the EXPO.
Besides working hard to learn and explore, there was plenty of time for networking to meet new colleagues and catch up with old friends. An extra special social event “Celebrando BiTS” – complete with Mexican culinary treats and an authentic Mariachi band – was held in honor of the 15th anniversary. The perfect weather made for an enjoyable celebration to drink margaritas and beer poolside!
Looking forward to the next fifteen years, I am honored to serve as the General Chairman of the BiTS Workshop starting in 2015. I promise to work hard to make BiTS the best event for everyone in test and burn-in! The committee and I will continue to improve the BiTS Workshop to maintain its well-earned reputation for excellence. Rest assured the technical program and exhibits will continue to provide great insight into what is “Now & Next”.
This year’s presentations are already available in the Premium Archive at www.bitsworkshop.org. The multimedia versions – audio synchronized with the presentation slides – are in the process of being posted. Since early submissions are eligible to win a prize, we are happy to receive your abstracts for 2015 now!
Looking forward to seeing you at the next BiTS Workshop in Mesa, Arizona March 15-18, 2015!