Failure Analysis Examples

The failure analysis process involves external visual inspection, photography, electrical measurements of the samples, which is often followed by other techniques (optical, SEM, EDS, FTIR, X-ray, and other measurements) to analyze the material and/or the failure.

Below are some links to examples of samples analyzed at SEM Lab, Inc.  They are divided into 4 sections:  Devices, Materials, Cross-Sections and Miscellaneous.  

IC Failure Analysis: Gold wire bond on aluminum die pad on decapsulated plastic molded IC.

Device Examples

Examples of various devices analyzed at SEM Lab, Inc.

Pb dendrite

Materials Examples

Some materials analysis examples seen in the lab.

A BGA solder joint cross section.


Various examples of cross sections analyzed at SEM Lab, Inc.

This is a plated thru hole (PTH) solder joint where the land on the solder side of the board has lifted due to a combination of excessive z-axis expansion of the laminate during wave solder and shrinkage stress in the solder fillet on cool down.


Analysis examples that don’t fit into the other categories.