Date of Completion


Embargo Period


Major Advisor

Dr. Rajeev Bansal

Associate Advisor

Dr. Marten van Dijk

Associate Advisor

Dr. Sina Shahbazmohamadi

Field of Study

Electrical Engineering


Doctor of Philosophy

Open Access

Open Access


The supply chain today spreads all around the globe. For assembling a system, several components, each of which may be produced in a different country and by a different manufacturer, need to travel the globe to get to the assembly sites. In such a global supply chain, tracing the components could be a great challenge and counterfeiters can find open doors to infiltrate the markets. Several billions of dollars of counterfeit integrated circuits (IC)s are sold each year. Low-quality authentic ICs might also pass the quality control sections and enter the supply chain occasionally. The endurance and reliability of the counterfeit and low-quality ICs are less than those of their authentic counterparts, and besides economical damage, unexpected system failures as a result of the failure of a counterfeit component can lead to loss of lives. As a result, quality management, authentication and counterfeit prevention in today`s electronic industry play a crucial role. The semiconductor business is constantly expanding and as a result, more counterfeiters become attracted to the semiconductor device manufacturing. Moreover, counterfeiters are constantly trying more complicated techniques to avoid being exposed. As a result, the counter-counterfeit industry needs to constantly develop new techniques for revealing the counterfeiters. From the quality management point of view, as the technology becomes more advanced, more advanced techniques are needed to control the quality of the ICs before entering the supply chain and prior to being selected in the assembly sites. In this work, we develop innovative techniques for quality management, authentication, and counterfeit detection.

In the first part of this work, encrypted micro-signatures are designed and fabricated by electron beam lithography (EBL) on the ICs. These signatures travel on the ICs through the global supply chain. Once the component is received at the assembly site, the signature is decrypted and authenticity is proved.

In the second part of this work, we developed advanced innovative techniques for physical inspection of the ICs by the use of terahertz (THz) spectroscopy and imaging. Recycled, blacktopped, and reverse engineered ICs are all detected by our THz authentication system.

In the third part, we realized a resolution enhancement technique (RET) for developing super-resolution THz images. This RET enhances the resolution of the THz images by more than 10 times, enabling the THz imaging systems to image and measure the dimensions of the features by accuracies beyond Abbe`s diffraction limit.

Available for download on Monday, April 24, 2023