25 Apr '17, 3pm

3D X-ray Tech for Easy Reverse Engineering of ICs

3D X-ray Tech for Easy Reverse Engineering of ICs

Image: Mirko Holler Tower of Ptychograpy: Scientists used X-ray ptychography to image the insides of this section of an Intel processor. A team of researchers based in Switzerland is on the way to laying bare much of the secret technology inside commercial processors. They pointed a beam of X-rays at a piece of an Intel processor and were able to reconstruct the chip’s warren of transistors and wiring in three dimensions. In the future, the team says, this imaging technique could be extended to create high-resolution, large-scale images of the interiors of chips. The technique is a significant departure from the way the chip industry currently looks inside finished chips to reverse engineer them or check that intellectual property hasn’t been misused. Today, reverse-engineering outfits progressively remove layers of a processor and take electron microscope images of one sm...

Full article: http://spectrum.ieee.org/semiconductors/processors/3d-xra...

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