PatentDe  


Dokumentenidentifikation EP1042681 20.10.2005
EP-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0001042681
Titel ZUSAMMENGESETZTE SCHALTMATRIX ZUM PRÜFEN UND ZUM VERBINDEN VON ZU TESTENDEN EINRICHTUNGEN AN MESSVORRICHTUNGEN
Anmelder Electro Scientific Industries, Inc., Portland, Oreg., US
Erfinder PAILTHORP, M., Robert, Portland, US
Vertreter derzeit kein Vertreter bestellt
DE-Aktenzeichen 69831600
Vertragsstaaten CH, DE, FR, GB, IE, IT, LI
Sprache des Dokument EN
EP-Anmeldetag 18.12.1998
EP-Aktenzeichen 989648258
WO-Anmeldetag 18.12.1998
PCT-Aktenzeichen PCT/US98/27129
WO-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0099034225
WO-Veröffentlichungsdatum 08.07.1999
EP-Offenlegungsdatum 11.10.2000
EP date of grant 14.09.2005
Veröffentlichungstag im Patentblatt 20.10.2005
IPC-Hauptklasse G01R 31/01
IPC-Nebenklasse H01C 17/22   H01H 67/24   

Beschreibung[en]
TECHNICAL FIELD

The invention relates to the field of electrical test and measurement equipment, and more particularly to a compound switching matrix for electrically connecting measuring equipment to test probe arrays for measurement of individual devices in an array of such devices during laser trimming thereof.

Even more particularly the invention relates to a compound switching matrix apparatus according to the preamble of claim 1 and a compound switching matrix apparatus according to the preamble of claim 10. Both preambles have been formulated with reference to US-A-4 300 207, which is directed to a multiple matrix switching system for use in connecting a unit under test to one or more external instruments which may either provide a signal input to the unit under test or measure the output of the unit under test.

BACKROUND OF THE INVENTION

Continuing trends in electronic circuit miniaturization have led ot the rapid development of circuit board surface mounted components, such as leadless "chip" capacitors, resistors, inductors, and integrated circuits. Chip resistors, in particular are very compact thick-film resistors ranging in size from smaller than 1.0 mm by 0.5 mm (0.04 inch by 0.02 inch) to larger than 3.0 mm by 1.5 mm (0.12 inch by 0.06 inch). Chip resistors are typically manufactured by screening and firing arrays of resistive paste materials forming resistance and connection-pad patterns on 49.5 mm by 60 mm (1.95 inch by 2.36 inch) ceramic substrates.

Fig. 1 shows an enlarged cutaway corner portion of a typical prior art substrate 10 on which is screened an array of 5,336 resistors 12 arranged in 58 columns 14 and 92 rows 16. After firing, each of resistors 12 is laser trimmed to a predetermined resistance value. Substrate 10 is then divided along score lines 17 (shown in dashed lines) into individual chip resistors and/or groups of chip resistors.

On a typical substrate, such as substrate 10, resistors 12 in columns 14 are electrically connected end-to-end by conductive pads 18 so that resistors 12 in each of columns 14 are electrically connected in series. However, resistors 12 in rows 16 are not electrically connected side-by-side.

Referring also to Fig. 2, during laser trimming, entire rows 16 or columns 14 of resistors 12 are electrically connected to a switching matrix 19 that electrically connects resistors 12 one at a time to a resistance measuring system 20 that cooperates with a laser 22 to trim each successively connected resistor 12 to its predetermined resistance value. The electrical connections to resistors 12 are made by probing conductive pads 18A and 18B with probes 24A and 24B (collectively "probes 24").

Laser trimming is a fast and accurate process that can trim 100 resistors per second to well within 5% of their predetermined values. Because laser trimming accuracy requirements often exceed 0.1%, and the predetermined resistance values may range from less than 0.1 ohm to greater than 100 Megohms, switching matrix 19 typically employs "dry-reed" relays that have an on-resistance of less than 0.1 ohms, a very high off-resistance, an insulation resistance greater than 100,000 Megohms, an actuation time less than 0.5 milliseconds, and a contact-to-contact capacitance less than 1.0 picofarad.

A typical switching matrix 19 for laser trimming an array of resistors may require several hundred relays, which even considering their stringent electrical specifications may, nevertheless, compromise measurement accuracy. For example, capacitance or insulation resistance may accumulate to an unacceptable level if too many relay contacts are connected in parallel with the resistor under test.

Skilled workers know that there are many possible ways to interconnect a particular resistor under test to resistance measuring system 20. However, the most cost-effective interconnection technique may depend on the target resistance values of the resistors under test. As a general rule, for very low resistance values (0.1 ohms to about 100 ohms), four-terminal "Kelvin connection" measurements are preferred; for intermediate values (about 100 ohms to about 100 Kohms), two-terminal measurements that add a minimum of extra resistance in series with the measured resistor are preferred; and for very high values (greater than about 100 Kohms), three-terminal "guarded" measurements are preferred. Of course, four-terminal guarded measurements are probably the most accurate for measuring any resistance value.

There are, of course, exceptions to the general rule for determining which measurement configuration to use. Groups of resistors may be interconnected so as to increase the overall measured resistance level beyond 100 ohms while still requiring four-terminal measurements. Likewise, groups of resistors may be interconnected so as to decrease the overall measured resistance below 100 Kohms while still requiring three-terminal measurements. In addition, three-terminal measurements may be required at lower than usual resistance measuring values to guard against leakage paths caused by conductive trimming debris trimmed away by the laser.

Resistance measuring system 20 typically has seven terminals that may be connected to the resistor under test. They are referred to as High-Force ("HF"), High-Sense ("HS"), Low-Force ("LF"), Low-Sense ("LS"), Guard-Force ("GF"), Guard-Sense ("GS"), and ground or common ("COM"). Also, the HF and HS terminals are often referred to as "High" terminals and the LF and LS terminals are often referred to as "Low" terminals. The force and sense terminal pairs should be connected together directly or through some acceptably low resistance relative to the resistor under test. To ensure high measurement accuracy and speed, the connection technique employed should minimize stray resistance and capacitance between High to Low terminals. One way to avoid the detrimental effects of stray resistance and capacitance is by effectively connecting such strays between the High and Guard terminals or the Low and Guard terminals.

Prior switching matrices, such as switching matrix 19, typically have either three or six relay contacts associated with each probe 24.

In the six contact per probe matrix, each of probes 24 connects to one contact of each of the relays and the other contacts connect respective to HF, HS, LF, LS, GF, and GS. The six contact per probe matrix has complete flexibility because any of probes 24 can make a two-terminal connection to one end of resistor 12, can make one-half of a Kelvin connection to one end of resistor 12, or can make a guard probe connection as required.

In the three contact per probe matrix, there are two classes of probes. In both classes, each of probes 24 connects to one contact of each of the relays. In the first class, the other contacts connect respectively to HF, LF, and GF. In the second class, the other contacts connect respectively to HS, LS, and GS. Because the force and sense terminal pairs are connected together when a resistor is connected to the measurement system, the six and three contact per probe matrices are electrically equivalent with respect to the effects of stray resistances or capacitances connected across the resistor 12 under test.

For a given number of probes, the three contact per probe matrix cannot connect to as many resistors as the six contact per probe matrix because two probes, connected together are required at each end of each resistor 12. However, the three contact per probe matrix may be implemented employing relays having two pairs of contacts per relay. One pair of contacts is used for switching the sense terminals to a probe and the other set of contacts is used for switching the force terminals to another probe.

Some relays used in prior switching matrices employ grounded internal shields between the relay coil and the dry-reed contacts. Such shields reduce undesirable coupling between the relay coil and the contacts, effectively increase the open-contact-to-contact resistance, and reduce contact-to-contact coupling because stray signal currents flow from contact to shield rather than from contact to contact.

To further reduce the effects of stray resistance and capacitance, switching matrices are often divided into groups or banks by employing bank-switching relays to disconnect the measurement system terminals from unused relays.

However, none of the above-described switch matrices can economically satisfy the ever-growing resistor array trimming requirements. For example, what is needed is a switching matrix that can economically interconnect resistance measuring system 20 via 192 probes to 48 or 96 resistors 12 in two-, three-, and four-terminal measurement configurations. The fully flexible, prior art six contact per probe matrix requires 1,152 (6 X 192) contacts (1,152 single contact or 576 dual-contact relays), without resorting to expensive bank switching. The prior art three contact per probe matrix does not meet the 96 resistor requirement.

Because each probe has contacts connected to High and Low terminals, it is possible for the stray capacitance and resistance of the many open contacts to be connected across the resistor under test, causing significant degradations in measurement speed, accuracy, and signal-to-noise ratio. Using internal relay shields reduces this problem, but at an accompanying additional cost. Bank switching can also reduce, but not eliminate, stray capacitance and resistance. Connecting the driven guard terminal to as many as necessary of the unused probes eliminates most leakage problems, but requires the simultaneous operation of many relays, which increases power consumption.

What is needed, therefore, is an inexpensive probe switching matrix for connecting a selected resistor in an array of more than 90 resistors to a resistance measuring system at a rate exceeding thousands resistors per minute without degrading the resistance measuring performance as compared to measuring a single resistor directly connected to the measurement system.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The above problem is solved by a compound switching matrix apparatus having the features of claim 1 and a compound switching matrix apparatus having the features of claim 10, respectively.

The compound switching matrix of this invention operates in cooperation with a resistance measuring system and a laser to quickly and accurately trim resistors to predetermined values while they are being measured. The compound switching matrix is implemented with dry reed relays and includes a probe switching matrix and a configuration matrix that reduce the average number of relay contacts required per probe to implement two-, three-, and four-terminal measurements with or without guarding. Moreover, the separate probe switching and measurement configuration matrices effectively separate the high and low sides of the measurement to reduce the effects of stray resistances and capacitances on measurement speed and accuracy. A switchable grounding configuration further improves measurement accuracy. The compound switching matrix of this invention enables sequential resistance measurements of individual resistors in the array, with two-, three-, and four-terminal measurement configurations being adapted to resistors having values ranging from less than 0.1 ohm to greater than 100 Megohms.

An advantage of this invention is that it provides for flexibly interconnecting an array of devices under test to a parameter measurement system.

Another advantage of this invention is that it provides for improving the measurement speed, accuracy, and signal-to-noise ratio of such a parameter measurement system.

A further advantage of this invention is that it provides for individually connecting resistors in array of more than 90 resistors to a resistance measuring system that is part of a laser trimming system.

Still another advantage of this invention is that it provides for individually connecting resistors in an array of more than 90 resistors to a resistance measuring system for performing two-, three-, or four-terminal measurements.

Additional objects and advantages of this invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment thereof that proceeds with reference to the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

  • Fig. 1 is a plan view of an enlarged corner portion of a typical prior art resistor array deposited on a substrate.
  • Fig. 2 is an simplified electrical block diagram of a prior art two-terminal resistance trimming and measurement system.
  • Fig. 3 is an electrical block diagram of a compound switching matrix of this invention for connecting an array of probes to a resistance measuring system.
  • Fig. 4 is an electrical block diagram of the compound switching matrix of Fig. 3 shown in a two-terminal resistance measurement configuration suitable for probing and measuring arrays of resistors having moderate resistance values.
  • Fig. 5 is an electrical block diagram of the compound switching matrix of Fig. 3 shown in a three-terminal resistance measurement configuration suitable for probing and measuring arrays of resistors having high resistance values.
  • Fig. 6 is an electrical block diagram of the compound switching matrix of Fig. 3 shown in a four-terminal resistance measurement configuration suitable for probing and measuring arrays of resistors having low resistance values.
  • Fig. 7 is an isometric view of a probe card of this invention.
  • Fig. 8 is an isometric view of a portion of the probe card of Fig. 7 enlarged to reveal multiple probes contacting a resistor array in a four-terminal per resistor configuration.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Fig. 3 shows a compound switching matrix 30 which requires only 440 single contact relays to perform 96 two-terminal measurements or 48 four-terminal measurements with 192 probes. The reduced number of relays employed by this invention increases reliability, reduces cost, and maintains measurement accuracy.

Compound switching matrix 30 includes a configuration matrix 32 in which dry reed configuration relays 34 through 89 electrically interconnect the terminals of resistance measuring system 20 via inter-matrix conductors A, B, C, D, E, F, G, and H to one or more probe matrices, such as probe matrices 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, and 97. To enhance performance and configuration flexibility it is preferably to group pairs of the probe matrices on separate circuit boards. In particular, probe matrices 90 and 93, 91 and 92, 94 and 97, and 95 and 96 are grouped on four circuit boards (not shown). The four probe matrices are shown herein as eight matrices merely to clarify their electrical interconnections. Probe matrices 90 through 97 include probe relays 101 through 164 electrically interconnecting inter-matrix conductors A, B, C, D, E, F, G, and H through probe card connectors 170 and 172 to a probe card 174 that mounts and positions probes 24. Compound switching matrix 30 is capable of electrically connecting any of probes 24 to any of the terminals on resistance measuring system 20. (Hereafter, particular ones of probes 24 are identified by the letter "P" followed by a numerical suffix that is the same as its closest associated probe relay identifying number, e.g., probe P125, probe P109, probe P116, and probe P140.)

In the preferred embodiment, each of probes 24 is electrically connected to two probe relays, e.g., probe P125 is connected to probe relays 117 and 125 of probe matrix 91. Each probe relay is electrically connected to one of the inter-matrix conductors, e.g., probe relay 117, when activated by a control signal (not shown), makes an electrical connection between probe P125 and inter-matrix conductor C. In turn, each inter-matrix conductor is electrically connected to a group of configuration relays, e.g., inter-matrix conductor C is electrically connected to configuration relays 46 through 51, and each configuration relay is electrically connected to one of terminal buses I, J, K, L, M, and N, e.g., configuration relays 37, 43, 49, 55, 61, 67, 73, and 79 are electrically connected to terminal bus L. Configuration relays 34 through 89 are activated by control signals (not shown) to selectively connect inter-matrix conductors A through H to terminal buses I through N. Terminal buses I through N are electrically connected to respective resistance measuring system 20 terminals HS, HF, GS, GF, LS, and LF.

As described with reference to Fig. 2, resistance measuring system 20 also includes a COM terminal, which can be electrically connected through configuration relays 82 through 85 to respective terminal buses I, J, M, and N. To increase measurement accuracy, the HF and HS terminals can be electrically isolated from inter-matrix conductors A through D by actuating configuration relays 82 and 83 and opening configuration relays 88 and 89. This grounds the left portions of terminal buses I and J associated with inter-matrix conductors A through D, disconnects terminals HS and HF from the left portions of terminal buses I and J, and limits terminals HS and HF to electrical connections with inter-matrix conductors E through H.

Likewise, the LS and LF terminals can be electrically isolated from inter-matrix conductors E through H by actuating configuration relays 84 and 85 and opening configuration relays 86 and 87. This grounds right portions of terminal buses M and N associated with inter-matrix conductors E through H, disconnects LS and LF from the right portions of terminal buses M and N, and limits terminals LS and LF to electrical connections with inter-matrix conductors A through D.

The configuration relays and probe relays employed in this invention do not have internal shields. However, they are actuated by layer wound coils in which the inner coil layer, i.e., the layer closest to the dry reed contacts, is electrically connected to the COM terminal or ground. Therefore, when the relay is not actuated, the coil acts as a shield, and when the relay is actuated, some relay-activating voltage or current may be coupled to the dry reed contacts, but the amount of coupling is minimized by the grounded inside coil layer.

EXAMPLES

Fig. 4 shows compound switching matrix 30 in a two-terminal resistance measurement configuration suitable for probing and measuring arrays of resistors having moderate resistance values ranging from about 100 ohms to about 100 Kohms. Configuration matrix 32 is set to this configuration by actuating configuration relays 39, 44, 51, and 56, which electrically connects terminals LS and LF to inter-matrix conductors A through D; and by actuating configuration relays 59, 64, 71, and 76, which electrically connects terminals HS and HF to inter-matrix conductors E through H. The GS and GF terminals are not used in this two-terminal resistance measurement configuration.

To increase measurement accuracy, the HF and HS terminals are electrically isolated from inter-matrix conductors A through D by actuating configuration relays 82 and 83 and opening configuration relays 88 and 89, and the LS and LF terminals are electrically isolated from inter-matrix conductors E through H by actuating configuration relays 84 and 85 and opening configuration relays 86 and 87.

In the two-terminal configuration, probes 24 are spaced apart such that each opposing pair of probes 24 contact a single one of resistors 12. For example, Fig. 4 shows resistors 12A, 12B, ... through 12N in which resistor 12A is probed by probes P125 and P149, and resistor 12N is probed by probes P116 and P140.

Two-terminal resistance measurement of exemplary resistor 12A is made by resistance measuring system 20 forcing a predetermined amount of measurement current from terminal HF, through configuration relay 71 and probe relay 149 to probe P149. The measurement current flows through resistor 12A, into probe P125, and returns to terminal LF through probe relay 117 and configuration relay 51. The measurement current flowing through resistor 12A generates across probes P125 and P149 a measurement voltage that is sensed at terminals HS and LS as follows. Probe P149 is electrically connected to terminal HS through probe relay 157 and configuration relay 76, and probe P125 is electrically connected to terminal LS through probe relay 125 and configuration relay 56. Because the approximate 0.2 ohm contact resistance of probes P125 and P149 is small compared to the moderate resistances of resistor 12A, voltage drop errors caused by the measurement current flowing through the probes can be ignored or compensated for with a simple offset.

Fig. 5 shows compound switching matrix 30 in a three-terminal resistance measurement configuration suitable for probing and measuring arrays of resistors having high resistance values greater than about 100 Kohms. Configuration matrix 32 is set to this configuration by actuating configuration relays 38, 39, 50, and 51, which electrically connects together the Low terminals and inter-matrix conductors A and C; by actuating configuration relays 58, 59, 70, and 71, which electrically connects together the High terminals and inter-matrix conductors E and G; and by actuating configuration relays 42, 43, 54, 55, 66, 67, 78, and 79, which electrically connects together the Guard terminals and applies a virtual ground guard voltage to inter-matrix conductors B, D, F, and H.

To increase measurement accuracy, the High terminals are isolated from inter-matrix conductors A through D by actuating configuration relays 82 and 83 and opening configuration relays 88 and 89, and the Low terminals are isolated from inter-matrix conductors E through H by actuating configuration relays 84 and 85 and opening configuration relays 86 and 87.

In the three-terminal configuration, probes 24 are spaced apart such that each opposing pair of probes 24 contact a single one of resistors 12. For example, Fig. 5 shows resistors 12A, 12B, ... through 12N in which resistor 12A is probed by probes P125 and P149, and resistor 12N is probed by probes P116 and P140.

Three-terminal resistance measurement of exemplary resistor 12A is made by resistance measuring system 20 forcing a predetermined amount of measurement voltage across resistor 12A, and sensing the resultant measurement current flowing therethrough. The measurement voltage is forced across terminals HF and LF and conveyed to resistor 12A from terminal HF, through configuration relay 71, probe relay 149, to probe P149, and from terminal LF through configuration relay 51, probe relay 117, to probe P125. Terminals HF and HS are electrically connected together by configuration relays 58, 59, 70, and 71, and terminals LF and LS, which are at the virtual ground potential, are electrically connected together by configuration relays 38, 39, 50, and 51. The predetermined measurement voltage across resistor 12A causes a measurement current to flow into terminal LF, which resistance measuring system 20 converts to a measured resistance value.

Because resistor 12A has a high resistance value, the measurement current may be very small, and a smaller, but significant portion of the measurement current may be diverted as a leakage current that flows through Low side leakage resistance paths RL formed, for example, between resistors 12A and 12B, and between probe-related wiring on probe matrices 91 and 92 and their associated ground planes.

To reduce or eliminate the effects of leakage current, the virtual ground guard voltage that is generated by terminal GF and connected to inter-matrix conductors B, D, F, and H, is electrically connected through probe relays 109 and 141 to respective probes P109 and P133 on resistor 12B. Because the guard voltage is at or about the same potential as the Low side of resistor 12A, very little leakage current can flow through the Low side leakage resistances.

Likewise, small voltage drop errors can occur because of the measurement current flowing through the contact resistances and wiring associated with probe relays 117 and 149 and probes P125 and P149. However, because the combined resistances are less than about 2.5 ohms, which is very small compared to the greater than 100 Kohm resistance of resistor 12A, the voltage drop errors are negligible.

The three-terminal configuration shown in Fig. 5 allows connecting any of Low side probes 24 to the Low or guard terminals, and connecting any of High side probes 24 to the High or Guard terminals.

Fig. 6 shows compound switching matrix 30 in a four-terminal resistance measurement configuration suitable for probing and measuring arrays of resistors having low resistance values ranging from about 0.1 ohm to about 100 ohms. Configuration matrix 32 is set to this configuration by actuating configuration relays 38, 51, 59, and 70, which electrically connect respective terminals LS, LF, HF, and HS to respective inter-matrix conductors A, C, E, and G; actuating configuration relays 42 and 78, which electrically connects terminal GS to inter-matrix conductors B and H; and actuating configuration relays 55 and 67, which electrically connects terminal GF to inter-matrix conductors D and F.

In the four-terminal configuration, probes 24 are spaced apart such that two adjacent pairs of probes 24 contact a single ones of resistors 12. For example, Fig. 6 shows resistors 12A, 12B, ... through 12N in which resistor 12A is probed by probes P125, P149, P109, and P133, and resistor 12N is probed by probes P132, P156, P116, and P140. Of course, the probes to not have to be adjacent, and various probe spacings, or combinations of probes, may be adapted to a variety of resistor array sizes and configurations.

Four-terminal resistance measurement of exemplary resistor 12A is made by resistance measuring system 20 forcing a predetermined amount of measurement current from terminal HF through configuration relay 59 and probe relay 133 to probe P133. The measurement current flows through resistor 12A, into probe P125, and returns to terminal LF through probe relay 117 and configuration relay 51. The measurement current flowing through resistor 12A generates across probes P109 and P149 a measurement voltage that is sensed by high-impedance (low current draw) terminals HS and LS as follows. Probe P149 is electrically connected to terminal HS through probe relay 149 and configuration relay 70, and probe P109 is electrically connected to terminal LS through probe relay 101 and configuration relay 38. Because the measurement current flows through probes P133 and P125 and probes P109 and P149 sense the measurement voltage without drawing any significant current sensed, the measurement voltage at terminals HS and LS is not altered by probe-, connector-, or wiring-related resistance.

The four-terminal configuration shown in Fig. 6 is suitable for making 4-terminal connections to any of resistors 24 and also permits sensing a guard voltage with one of probes 24 and forcing a guard voltage with a different one or ones of probes 24 as described with reference to Fig. 5.

The resistance measuring configurations described with reference to Figs. 4, 5, and 6 are suitable for most chip resistor trimming and similar applications, and are advantageous because configuration matrix 32 does not have to change while trimming different resistors in the array, which maximizes configuration relay operating life. Moreover, probe relays actuate on the average of only once or twice for each group of resistors being probed at any one time.

For a switching matrix employing more than 13 probes, compound switching matrix 30 is further advantageous because it uses fewer relays than a conventional 6 contacts-per-probe switching matrix and has the switching flexibility to rapidly make high accuracy resistance measurements for most values of resistors. Of course, compound switching matrix 30 is particularly advantageous for laser trimming arrays of similar chip resistors formed on a substrate.

Figs. 7 and 8 show the preferred physical arrangement of probe card 174 in which probe card connectors 170 and 172 are electrically connected to respective rows of probes 24L and 24R, which are positioned with associated opposing pairs of probes contacting conductive pads 18 of resistors 12 on substrate 10. Probe card 174 includes an opening 180 positioned above rows of probes 24L and 24R that allows directing a laser beam 182 across resistors 12 to trim them to their predetermined values.

A four-terminal per resistor configuration is revealed in Fig. 8, but other configurations are possible as described with reference to Figs. 4 and 5.

The effects of leakage currents and probe card capacitance can be minimized by configuring compound switching matrix 30 to electrically connect the Low and Guard terminals to probes 24L and the High and Guard terminals to probes 24R.

Skilled workers will recognize that portions of this invention may be implemented differently from the above-described implementations. For example, compound switching matrix 30 may be configured for use in applications different than those set forth in the above-described examples. It is possible to connect any of probes 24L and 24R to a High or Low terminal, thereby some relay capacitance across the resistor under test, which might be acceptable in some applications, such as measuring lower value resistors. The examples show probing resistors in disconnected adjacent rows, but probing resistors in connected adjacent columns is possible and may be used for measuring resistors in buried node configurations. In another variation, one column of resistors may be measured by probes 24L and another column of resistors may be measured by probes 24R. Moreover, this invention is not limited to probing and measuring resistors, but is also useful for probing, trimming, or measuring many other devices, such as capacitors, inductors, and delay lines. Of course, more or fewer probes and probe matrices may be employed, and they may have a variety of different sizes, spacings, and arrangements, as needed to suit various applications. For example, this invention is also suitable for probing at least about 25 devices with at least about 100 probes.

It will be obvious, therefore, to those having skill in the art that many other changes may be made to the details of the above-described embodiment of this invention without departing from the underlying principles thereof. Accordingly, it will be appreciated that this invention is also applicable to probing applications other than those found in resistor laser trimming applications. The scope of the present invention should, therefore, be determined only by the following claims.


Anspruch[de]
  1. Verbundschaltmatrix-Vorrichtung zum Verbinden eines Satzes von Bauelementen (12) mit einem Satz von Anschlüssen (LS, LF, COM, GS, GF, HS, HF) an einem Meßsystem (20), mit:
    • einem Satz von Sonden (24) zum Kontaktieren des Satzes von Bauelementen;
    • einem Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais (101-164) zum selektiven Verbinden des Satzes von Sonden mit einem Satz von Leitern (A-H) zwischen den Matrizes; einem Satz von Konfigurationsmatrixrelais (34-89) zum selektiven Verbinden des Satzes von Anschlüssen am Meßsystem mit dem Satz von Leitern zwischen den Matrizes;
    dadurch gekennzeichnet, daß sie ferner einen Laser (22) zum Abgleichen von ausgewählten der mit dem Meßsystem verbundenen Bauelemente auf vorbestimmte Werte, wie vom Meßsystem gemessen, umfaßt.
  2. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 1, wobei der Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais (101-164) und der Satz von Konfigurationsmatrixrelais (34-89) Reed-Relais umfassen.
  3. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 1 oder 2, wobei der Satz von Bauelementen (12) mindestens einen eines Satzes von Widerständen (12), eines Satzes von Kondensatoren, eines Satzes von Induktoren und eines Satzes von Verzögerungsleitungen umfaßt.
  4. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorangehenden Ansprüche, wobei der Satz von Bauelementen (12) eine Matrix von Widerständen ist, die auf einem Substrat (10) ausgebildet ist.
  5. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorangehenden Ansprüche, wobei der Satz von Bauelementen (12) mindestens 25 Bauelemente umfaßt und der Satz von Sonden mindestens 100 Sonden umfaßt.
  6. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorangehenden Ansprüche, wobei der Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais (101-164) und der Satz von Konfigurationsmatrixrelais (34-89) zusammen etwa 440 Relais umfassen und der Satz von Sonden (24) etwa 192 Sonden umfaßt.
  7. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorangehenden Ansprüche, wobei jede Sonde (24) in dem Satz von Sonden mit 2 Relais im Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais (101-164) verbunden ist.
  8. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorangehenden Ansprüche, wobei der Satz von Sonden (24) in eine erste (24L) und eine zweite (24R) Teilmenge von Sonden unterteilt ist und der Satz von Anschlüssen in eine erste (LS, LF) und eine zweite (HF, HS) Teilmenge von Anschlüssen unterteilt ist und die Konfigurationsmatrixrelais derart einstellbar sind, daß die erste Teilmenge von Anschlüssen durch den Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais mit der ersten Teilmenge von Sonden verbunden wird und die zweite Teilmenge von Anschlüssen durch den Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais mit der zweiten Teilmenge von Sonden verbunden wird.
  9. Vorrichtung nach einem der vorangehenden Ansprüche, wobei der Satz von Sonden (24) auf einer Sondenkarte (174) montiert ist, die von der Verbundschaltmatrix (30) durch einen Satz von Sondenkarten-Verbindungssteckern (170, 172) zum elektrischen Verbinden des Satzes von Sonden (24) mit dem Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais (101-164) elektrisch abtrennbar ist.
  10. Verbundschaltmatrix- (30) Vorrichtung zum Verbinden eines Satzes von mindestens 25 Widerständen (12A-12N) einzeln mit einem Satz von mindestens 4 Anschlüssen an einem Widerstandsmeßsystem (20), mit:
    • einem Satz von mindestens 100 Sonden (24) zum Kontaktieren des Satzes von mindestens 25 Widerständen;
    • einem Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais (101-164) zum selektiven Verbinden von Teilmengen von mindestens 2 Sonden (P125, P149) im Satz von mindestens 100 Sonden, eine Teilmenge auf einmal, mit ausgewählten Elementen eines Satzes von Leitern (A - H) zwischen den Matrizes; und
    • einem Satz von Konfigurationsmatrixrelais (34-89) zum selektiven Verbinden des Satzes von mindestens 4 Anschlüssen am Widerstandsmeßsystem (20) mit ausgewählten Elementen des Satzes von Leitern (A-H) zwischen den Matrizes;
    dadurch gekennzeichnet, daß

    der Satz von Leitern zwischen den Matrizes ein Satz von 8 Leitern (A-H) zwischen den Matrizes ist, und

    sie ferner einen Laser (22) umfaßt, der mit dem Widerstandsmeßsystem (20) zusammenwirkt, um einen ausgewählten der Widerstände (12) auf einen vorbestimmten Widerstandswert abzugleichen, während der ausgewählte der Widerstände (12) durch die Sätze mit dem Widerstandsmeßsystem (20) verbunden ist.
  11. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 10, wobei der Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais (101 - 164) und der Satz von Konfigurationsmatrixrelais (34 - 89) Reed-Relais umfassen.
  12. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 10 oder 11, wobei der Satz von mindestens 25 Widerständen (12A-12N) ein Teil einer größeren Matrix von Widerständen ist, die auf einem Substrat (10) ausgebildet ist.
  13. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 10, 11 oder 12, wobei der Satz von mindestens 100 Sonden (24) auf einer Sondenkarte (174) montiert ist, die von der Verbundschaltmatrix durch einen Satz von Sondenkarten-Verbindungssteckern (170, 172) zum elektrischen Verbinden des Satzes von mindestens 100 Sonden mit dem Satz von Sondenmatrixrelais (101-164) elektrisch abtrennbar ist.
Anspruch[en]
  1. A compound switching matrix apparatus for interconnecting a set of devices (12) to a set of terminals (LS, LF, COM, GS, GF, HS, HF) on a measurement system (20) comprising:
    • a set of probes (24) for contacting the set of devices;
    • a set of probe matrix relays (101-164) for selectively interconnecting the set of probes to a set of inter-matrix conductors (A - H);
    • a set of configuration matrix relays (34-89) for selectively interconnecting the set of terminals on the measurement system to the set of inter-matrix conductors;
    characterised by further comprising

    a laser (22) for trimming selected ones of the devices interconnected to the measurement system to predetermined values as measured by the measurement system.
  2. The apparatus of claim 1 in which the set of probe matrix relays (101-164) and the set of configuration matrix relays (34-89) comprise dry reed relays.
  3. The apparatus of claim 1 or 2 in which the set of devices (12) includes at least one of a set of resistors (12), a set of capacitors, a set of inductors, and a set of delay lines.
  4. The apparatus of one of the preceding claims in which the set of devices (12) is an array of resistors formed on a substrate (10).
  5. The apparatus of one of the preceding claims in which the set of devices (12) includes at least 25 devices and the set of probes includes at least 100 probes.
  6. The apparatus of one of the preceding claims in which the set of probe matrix relays (101-164) and the set of configuration matrix relays (34-89) together include about 440 relays and the set of probes (24) includes about 192 probes.
  7. The apparatus of one of the preceding claims in which each probe (24) in the set of probes is connected to 2 relays in the set of probe matrix relays (101-164).
  8. The apparatus of one of the preceding claims in which the set of probes (24) is subdivided into first (24L) and second (24R) subsets of probes and the set of terminals is subdivided into first (LS, LF) and second (HF, HS) subsets of terminals, and the configuration matrix relays are settable such that the first subset of terminals is interconnected by the set of probe matrix relays to the first subset of probes and the second subset of terminals is interconnected by the set of probe matrix relays to the second subset of probes.
  9. The apparatus of one of the preceding claims in which the set of probes (24) are mounted on a probe card (174) that is electrically separable from the compound switching matrix (30) by a set of probe card connectors (170, 172) for electrically connecting the set of probes (24) to the set of probe matrix relays (101-164).
  10. A compound switching matrix (30) apparatus for interconnecting a set of at least 25 resistors (12A-12N), one at a time, to a set of at least 4 terminals on a resistance measuring system (20) comprising:
    • a set of at least 100 probes (24) for contacting the set of at least 25 resistors;
    • a set of probe matrix relays (101-164) for selectively interconnecting subsets of at least 2 probes (P125, P149) in the set of at least 100 probes, one subset at a time, to selected members of a set of inter-matrix conductors (A - H); and
    • a set of configuration matrix relays (34-89) for selectively interconnecting the set of at least 4 terminals on the resistance measuring system (20) to selected members of the set of inter-matrix conductors (A-H);
    characterized

    in that said set of inter-matrix conductors is a set of 8 inter-matrix conductors (A-H), and

    in further comprising a laser (22) that cooperates with the resistance measuring system (20) for trimming a selected one of the resistors (12) to a predetermined resistance value while the selected one of the resistors (12) is interconnected by said sets to the resistance measuring system (20).
  11. The apparatus of claim 10 in which the set of probe matrix relays (101 - 164) and the set of configuration matrix relays (34 - 89) comprise dry reed relays.
  12. The apparatus of claim 10 or 11 in which the set of at least 25 resistors (12A-12N) is part of a larger array of resistors formed on a substrate (10).
  13. The apparatus of claim 10, 11 or 12 in which the set of at least 100 probes (24) is mounted on a probe card (174) that is electrically separable from the compound switching matrix by a set of probe card connectors (170, 172) for electrically connecting the set of at least 100 probes to the set of probe matrix relays (101-164).
Anspruch[fr]
  1. Appareil de type matrice de commutation composite pour interconnecter un jeu de dispositifs (12) à un jeu de bornes (LS, LF, COM, GS, GF, HS, HF) d'un système de mesure (20) comprenant :
    • un jeu de sondes (24) pour établir le contact avec le jeu de dispositifs ; un jeu de relais de sonde en matrice (101 - 164) pour interconnecter de manière sélective le jeu de sondes à un jeu de conducteurs inter-matrice (A - H);
    • un jeu de relais de matrice de configuration (34 - 89) pour interconnecter de manière sélective le jeu le jeu de bornes du système de mesure au jeu de conducteurs inter-matrice ;
    caractérisé en ce qu'il comprend en outre

    un laser (22) pour ajuster des dispositifs sélectionnés parmi ceux interconnectés au système de mesure à des valeurs prédéterminées selon la mesure par le système de mesure.
  2. Appareil selon la revendication 1, dans lequel le jeu de relais de sonde en matrice (101 - 164) et le jeu de relais de matrice de configuration (34 - 89) comprennent des relais Reed à contact sec.
  3. Appareil selon la revendication 1 ou 2, dans lequel le jeu de dispositifs (12) comprend au moins un élément parmi un jeu de résistances (12), un jeu de capacités, un jeu d'inductances et un jeu de lignes à retard.
  4. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel le jeu de dispositifs (12) est une matrice de résistances formée sur un substrat (10).
  5. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel le jeu de dispositifs (12) comprend au moins 25 dispositifs et le jeu de sondes comprend au moins 100 sondes.
  6. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel le jeu de relais de sonde en matrice (101 - 164) et le jeu de relais de matrice de configuration (34 - 89), ensemble, comprennent environ 440 relais et le jeu de sondes (24) comprend environ 192 sondes.
  7. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel chaque sonde (24) du jeu de sondes est connectée à 2 relais du jeu de relais de sonde en matrice (101 - 164).
  8. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel le jeu de sondes (24) est subdivisé en un premier (24L) et un deuxième (24R) sous-jeu de sondes et le jeu de bornes est subdivisé en un premier (LS, LF) et un deuxième (HF, HS) sous-jeu de bornes, et les relais de matrice de configuration peuvent être réglés de façon telle que le premier sous-jeu de bornes soit interconnecté par le jeu de relais de sonde en matrice au premier sous-jeu de sondes et le deuxième sous-jeu de bornes soit interconnecté par le jeu de relais de sonde en matrice au deuxième sous-jeu de sondes.
  9. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel le jeu de sondes (24) est monté sur une carte de sondes (174) qui peut être électriquement séparée de la matrice de commutation composite (30) par un jeu de connecteurs de carte de sondes (170, 172) pour connecter électriquement le jeu de sondes (24) au jeu de relais de sonde en matrice (101 - 164).
  10. Appareil de type matrice de commutation composite (30) pour interconnecter un jeu d'au moins 25 résistances (12A - 12N), une par une, à un jeu d'au moins 4 bornes d'un système de mesure de résistance (20) comprenant :
    • un jeu d'au moins 100 sondes (24) pour établir un contact avec le jeu d'au moins 25 résistances ;
    • un jeu de relais de sonde en matrice (101 - 164) pour interconnecter de façon sélective des sous-jeux d'au moins 2 sondes (P125, P149) du jeu d'au moins 100 sondes, un sous-jeu à chaque fois, à des éléments sélectionnés d'un jeu de conducteurs inter-matrice (A - H) ; et
    • un jeu de relais de configuration de matrice (34 - 89) pour interconnecter de façon sélective le jeu d'au moins 4 bornes du système de mesure de résistance (20) à des éléments sélectionnés du jeu de conducteurs inter-matrice (A - H) ;
    caractérisé

    en ce que ledit jeu de conducteurs inter-matrice est un jeu de 8 conducteurs inter-matrice (A - H), et

    en ce qu'il comprend en outre un laser (22) fonctionnant conjointement avec le système de mesure de résistance (20) pour ajuster une résistance sélectionnée parmi les résistances (12) pour obtenir une valeur de résistance prédéterminée alors que la résistance sélectionnée parmi les résistances (12) est interconnectée par lesdits jeux au système de mesure de résistance (20).
  11. Appareil selon la revendication 10 dans lequel le jeu de relais de sonde en matrice (101 - 164) et le jeu de relais de matrice de configuration (34 - 89) comprennent des relais Reed à contact sec.
  12. Appareil selon la revendication 10 ou 11 dans lequel le jeu d'au moins 25 résistances (12A - 12N) fait partie d'une matrice plus grande de résistances formées sur un substrat (10).
  13. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications 10, 11 ou 12 dans lequel le jeu d'au moins 100 sondes (24) est monté sur une carte de sondes (174) qui peut être électriquement séparée de la matrice de commutation composite par un jeu de connecteurs de carte de sondes (170, 172) pour connecter électriquement le jeu d'au moins 100 sondes au jeu de relais de sonde en matrice (101 - 164).






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