Stealth dicing (SD) is an innovative dicing method developed by Hamamatsu Photonics K.K. In the SD method, a permeable nanosecond laser is focused inside a silicon wafer and scanned horizontally. A thermal shock wave propagates every pulse toward the side to which the laser is irradiated, then a high dislocation density layer is formed inside the wafer after the thermal shock wave propagation. In our previous study, it was concluded that an internal crack whose initiation is a dislocation is propagated when the thermal shock wave by the next pulse overlaps with this layer partially. In the experimental result, the trace that a crack is progressed gradually step by step was observed. In this study, the possibility of internal crack propagation by laser pulses was investigated. A two-dimensional thermal stress analysis based on the linear fracture mechanics was conducted using the stress distribution obtained by the axisymmetric thermal stress analysis. As a result, the validity of the hypothesis based on a heat transfer analysis result previously presented was supported. Also it was concluded that the internal crack is propagated by at least two pulses.© (2010) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.