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Built-In Self-Test: Assuring System Integrity
November 1996 (vol. 29 no. 11)
pp. 39-45

Testing electronic products is a crucial part of the manufacturing process. This is particularly the case with today's complex products, in which even the smallest hardware defect can cause serious malfunctions. Integrated circuits being their life on a wafer and are tested even before the wafer is diced into chips. The chips are subsequently packaged and used in higher level electronics. Each manufacturing step can introduce new defects. However, as products become more complex, it becomes more difficult to use traditional external testing methods. This is the case because the integrated-circuit chips that that these products contain have an increasing number of deeply embedded core functions and are also operating at increasing frequencies. In addition, testing equipment has bandwidth and performance limitations. In many cases, BIST , which moves critical test and measurement functions inside chips, can be used to conduct the necessary testing. BIST, which utilizes scanning technology, provides the stimulus-generation and response-processing capabilities necessary to test complex logic structures and embedded memory. Embedded BIST functions match the chip's capabilities, which can make them very effective testing mechanisms. Also, BIST stays with the chip throughout its life. Moreover, the addition of BIST features to electronics hardware frequently doesn't significantly increase a product's size, cost, and production time, as was the case in the past.

Citation:
Bernd Könemann, Ben Bennetts, Najmi Jarwala, Benoit Nadeau-Dostie, "Built-In Self-Test: Assuring System Integrity," Computer, vol. 29, no. 11, pp. 39-45, Nov. 1996, doi:10.1109/2.544236
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