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Title:The extra steps it takes to break the limit
Author(s):Liu, Dicky
Subject(s):Electrical and Computer Engineering
Abstract:For extremely high performance nano-sized semiconductors, extreme measures are required: full-body suits, high temperature furnaces (1100°C / 2100°F), blue light-free environment, ultra clean air, and steady hands unfazed by potential hazards. The scientist uses a pair of stainless-steel tweezers to load a four-inch silicon wafer, which has nano-sized patterns drawn by ultraviolet light, bases, and hydrofluoric acid, onto a fused quartz holder between the two blank buffer wafers. The heat will facilitate chemical reactions that turn these patterns into the billions of transistors, which are the fundamental building blocks of integrated circuits that power all modern-day electronics. Due to the intense heat from the furnace, the scientist only has moments to load the wafer before the tweezers soften and melt. This fabrication step must be done with the highest degree of dexterity and alacrity that only comes with experience.
Issue Date:2019
Rights Information:Copyright 2019 Dicky Liu
Date Available in IDEALS:2019-05-09

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