Debugging the Chip

Richard Walker – February 2016

This image shows a fault on a damaged microchip, which was being investigated by members of the Proteus team.

It was captured using a thermal camera, which detects infrared light. Infrared light allows us to ‘see’ the temperature variation of objects through a false-colour image, such as that shown here, where blue represents the coldest areas and white represents the hottest.

The faint, white glow towards the bottom right-hand side indicates a ‘hot spot’ that highlights the fault – in this case, it is showing us the location of a damaged circuit.

To capture this image the glass lid over the chip had to be removed, as infrared light is strongly absorbed or scattered by glass.

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