Discrete transistor measuring and matching using a solid core oven

Inkinen, M.; Mäkelä, K.; Vuorela, T.; Palovuori, K.
March 2013
Review of Scientific Instruments;Mar2013, Vol. 84 Issue 3, p034703
Academic Journal
This paper presents transistor measurements done at a constant temperature. The aim in this research was to develop a reliable and repeatable method for measuring and searching transistor pairs with similar parameters, as in certain applications it is advantageous to use transistors from the same production batch due to the significant variability in batches from different manufacturers. Transistor manufacturing methods are well established, but due to the large variability in tolerance, not even transistors from the same manufacturing batch have identical properties. Transistors' electrical properties are also strongly temperature-dependent. Therefore, when measuring transistor properties, the temperature must be kept constant. For the measurement process, a solid-core oven providing stable temperature was implemented. In the oven, the base-to-emitter voltage (VBE) and DC-current gain (β) of 32 transistors could be measured simultaneously. The oven's temperature was controlled with a programmable thermostat, which allowed accurate constant temperature operation. The oven is formed by a large metal block with an individual chamber for each transistor to be measured. Isolation of individual transistors and the highly thermally conductive metal core structure prevent thermal coupling between transistors. The oven enables repeatable measurements, and thus measurements between different batches are comparable. In this research study, the properties of over 5000 transistors were measured and the variance of the aforementioned properties was analyzed.


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