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The Surprising Life Cycle of a Microchip

The Surprising Life Cycle of a Microchip

Even though we use devices containing them every day, the silicon microchip at the heart of modern technology is barely understood by the average consumer. True, the details of microchip manufacture are fairly technical, but in broad strokes the process is surprisingly simple: a wafer of prepared silicon is chemically treated to create what are essentially pipes for electrons. Then, when a charge is applied to the chip, the electrons flow through the pipes to perform calculations.  Building the Foundation The life cycle of a microchip begins with a prepared foundation of silicon, created using a process such as silicon...