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An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of
electronic circuit 200px, A circuit built on a printed circuit board (PCB). An electronic circuit is composed of individual electronic component An electronic component is any basic discrete device or physical entity in an electronic system used to affect ele ...

electronic circuit
s on one small flat piece (or "chip") of
semiconductor A semiconductor material has an value falling between that of a , such as metallic copper, and an , such as glass. Its falls as its temperature rises; metals behave in the opposite way. Its conducting properties may be altered in useful ways ...
material, usually
silicon Silicon is a chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol Si and atomic number 14. It is a hard, brittle crystalline solid with a blue-grey metallic lustre, and is a Tetravalence, tetravalent metalloid and semiconductor. It is a member ...

silicon
.
Large numbers Numbers that are significantly larger than those typically used in everyday life, for instance in simple counting or in monetary transactions, appear frequently in fields such as mathematics, physical cosmology, cosmology, cryptography, and stat ...
of tiny
MOSFET The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...

MOSFET
s (metal–oxide–semiconductor
field-effect transistors The field-effect transistor (FET) is a type of transistor that uses an electric field to control the flow of Electric current, current in a semiconductor. FETs are devices with three terminals: ''source'', ''gate'', and ''drain''. FETs control ...
) integrate into a small chip. This results in circuits that are orders of magnitude smaller, faster, and less expensive than those constructed of discrete
electronic component An electronic component is any basic discrete device or physical entity in an electronic system Electronic may refer to: *Electronics, the science of how to control electric energy in semiconductor *Electronics (magazine), ''Electronics'' (maga ...
s. The IC's
mass production Mass production, also known as flow production or continuous production, is the production of substantial amounts of standardized Standardization or standardisation is the process of implementing and developing technical standard A technic ...
capability, reliability, and building-block approach to
integrated circuit design 400px, Engineer using an early IC-designing workstation to analyze a section of a circuit design cut on rubylith, circa 1979 Integrated circuit design, or IC design, is a sub-field of electronics engineering Printed circuit board Electronic ...

integrated circuit design
has ensured the rapid adoption of standardized ICs in place of designs using discrete
transistor upright=1.4, gate A gate or gateway is a point of entry to or from a space enclosed by walls. The word derived from old Norse "gat" meaning road A road is a thoroughfare, route, or way on land between two Location (geography), places tha ...

transistor
s. ICs are now used in virtually all electronic equipment and have revolutionized the world of
electronics The field of electronics is a branch of physics and electrical engineering that deals with the emission, behaviour and effects of electrons The electron is a subatomic particle In physical sciences, subatomic particles are smaller than ...
.
Computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to Execution (computing), carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of operations known as Computer program, programs. These ...

Computer
s,
mobile phone A mobile phone, cellular phone, cell phone, cellphone, handphone, or hand phone, sometimes shortened to simply mobile, cell or just phone, is a portable telephone A telephone is a telecommunications device that permits two or more use ...

mobile phone
s, and other digital
home appliance A home appliance, also referred to as a domestic appliance, an electric appliance or a household appliance, is a machine which assists in household A household consists of one or several persons who live in the same dwelling and share meals. I ...
s are now inextricable parts of the structure of modern societies, made possible by the small size and low cost of ICs such as modern computer processors and
microcontrollers A microcontroller (MCU for ''microcontroller unit'') is a small computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of ...

microcontrollers
. Integrated circuits were made practical by technological advancements in
metal–oxide–silicon The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...
(MOS)
semiconductor device fabrication Semiconductor device fabrication is the process used to manufacture semiconductor devices A semiconductor A semiconductor material has an Electrical resistivity and conductivity, electrical conductivity value falling between that of a El ...
. Since their origins in the 1960s, the size, speed, and capacity of chips have progressed enormously, driven by technical advances that fit more and more MOS transistors on chips of the same size – a modern chip may have many billions of MOS transistors in an area the size of a human fingernail. These advances, roughly following
Moore's law Moore's law is the observation that the number of transistor upright=1.4, gate A gate or gateway is a point of entry to or from a space enclosed by walls. The word derived from old Norse "gat" meaning road A road is a thoroughfare ...
, make computer chips of today possess millions of times the capacity and thousands of times the speed of the computer chips of the early 1970s. ICs have two main advantages over
discrete circuit 200px, A circuit built on a printed circuit board (PCB). An electronic circuit is composed of individual electronic component An electronic component is any basic discrete device or physical entity in an electronic system Electronic may refer ...
s: cost and performance. Cost is low because the chips, with all their components, are printed as a unit by
photolithography In manufacturing, photolithography or optical lithography is a general term for techniques that use to produce minutely patterned s of suitable materials over a substrate, such as a , to protect selected areas of it during subsequent , , or op ...
rather than being constructed one transistor at a time. Furthermore, packaged ICs use much less material than discrete circuits. Performance is high because the IC's components switch quickly and consume comparatively little power because of their small size and proximity. The main disadvantage of ICs is the high cost to design them and fabricate the required
photomask A photomask is an opaque plate with holes or transparencies that allow light to shine through in a defined pattern. They are commonly used in and the production of s (ICs or "chips") in particular. Masks are used to produce a pattern on a substra ...
s. This high initial cost means ICs are only commercially viable when
high production volumes
high production volumes
are anticipated.


Terminology

An ''integrated circuit'' is defined as:
A circuit in which all or some of the circuit elements are inseparably associated and electrically interconnected so that it is considered to be indivisible for the purposes of construction and commerce.
Circuits meeting this definition can be constructed using many different technologies, including
thin-film transistor A thin-film transistor (TFT) is a special type of field-effect transistor The field-effect transistor (FET) is a type of transistor that uses an electric field to control the flow of Electric current, current in a semiconductor. FETs are devic ...
s, thick-film technologies, or
hybrid integrated circuit 250px, An (orange-epoxy) encapsulated hybrid circuit on a printed circuit board. A hybrid integrated circuit (HIC), hybrid microcircuit, hybrid circuit or simply hybrid is a miniaturized electronic circuit 200px, A circuit built on a printed ...
s. However, in general usage ''integrated circuit'' has come to refer to the single-piece circuit construction originally known as a ''monolithic integrated circuit'', often built on a single piece of silicon.


History

An early attempt at combining several components in one device (like modern ICs) was the
Loewe 3NF The Loewe 3NF was an early attempt to combine several functions in one electronic Electronic may refer to: *Electronics Electronics comprises the physics, engineering, technology and applications that deal with the emission, flow and control ...
vacuum tube from the 1920s. Unlike ICs, it was designed with the purpose of
tax avoidance Tax avoidance is the legal usage of the tax A tax is a compulsory financial charge or some other type of levy imposed on a taxpayer (an individual or legal entity In law, a legal person is any person A person (plural people or persons ...
, as in Germany, radio receivers had a tax that was levied depending on how many tube holders a radio receiver had. It allowed radio receivers to have a single tube holder. Early concepts of an integrated circuit go back to 1949, when German engineer Werner Jacobi ( Siemens AG) filed a patent for an integrated-circuit-like semiconductor amplifying device showing five
transistors file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal gate, gate (G), body (B), source (S) and drain (D) terminals. The gate is separated from the body by an insulating layer (pink). A ...
on a common substrate in a three-stage
amplifier An amplifier, electronic amplifier or (informally) amp is an electronic device that can increase the power Power typically refers to: * Power (physics) In physics, power is the amount of energy transferred or converted per unit time. In ...

amplifier
arrangement. Jacobi disclosed small and cheap
hearing aid A hearing aid is a device designed to improve hearing by making sound audible to a person with hearing loss Hearing loss is a partial or total inability to Hearing, hear. Hearing loss may be present at birth or acquired at any time afterwards. ...
s as typical industrial applications of his patent. An immediate commercial use of his patent has not been reported. Another early proponent of the concept was
Geoffrey Dummer Geoffrey William Arnold Dummer, MBE (1945), Civil Engineer, C. Eng., Institution of Electrical Engineers, IEE Premium Award, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, FIEEE, Institution of Electrical Engineers, MIEE, Presidential Med ...

Geoffrey Dummer
(1909–2002), a radar scientist working for the
Royal Radar Establishment The Royal Radar Establishment was a research centre in Malvern, Worcestershire in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardi ...
of the British
Ministry of DefenceMinistry of Defence or Ministry of Defense may refer to: * Ministry of defence, a type of government department responsible for matters of defence Current ministries * Ministry of Defense (Afghanistan) * Ministry of Defence (Albania) * Ministry ...
. Dummer presented the idea to the public at the Symposium on Progress in Quality Electronic Components in Washington, D.C. on 7 May 1952. He gave many symposia publicly to propagate his ideas and unsuccessfully attempted to build such a circuit in 1956. Between 1953 and 1957,
Sidney Darlington Sidney Darlington (July 18, 1906 – October 31, 1997) was an American electrical engineer and inventor of a transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal gate, ...
and Yasuo Tarui (
Electrotechnical Laboratory The , or AIST, is a Japanese research facility headquartered in Tokyo Tokyo ( , ; Japanese language, Japanese: 東京, ''Tōkyō'' ), officially the Tokyo Metropolis (Japanese language, Japanese: 東京都, ''Tōkyō-to''), is the capital ...
) proposed similar chip designs where several transistors could share a common active area, but there was no
electrical isolation is the most widespread example of galvanic isolation. is a very popular method of isolation in digital circuits. opto-isolators. Relative sizes of LED (red) and sensor (green) are exaggerated. EL817 phototransistor opto-isolator in DIP-4 pac ...
to separate them from each other. The monolithic integrated circuit chip was enabled by the inventions of the
planar process The planar process is a manufacturing process used in the semiconductor industry to build individual components of a transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal g ...
by
Jean HoerniJean Amédée Hoerni (September 26, 1924 – January 12, 1997) was a Swiss-American engineer. He was a silicon transistor pioneer, and a member of the " traitorous eight". He developed the planar process, an important technology for reliably fabr ...
and
p–n junction isolation p–n junction isolation is a method used to electrically isolate electronic component An electronic component is any basic discrete device or physical entity in an electronic system used to affect electrons or their associated fields. Electr ...
by
Kurt Lehovec Kurt Lehovec (June 12, 1918 – February 17, 2012) was one of the pioneers of the integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circu ...

Kurt Lehovec
. Hoerni's invention was built on
Mohamed M. Atalla Mohamed M. Atalla ( ar, محمد عطاالله; August 4, 1924 – December 30, 2009) was an Egyptian-American engineer, physical chemist Physical chemistry is the study of macroscopic The macroscopic scale is the length scale on which ...

Mohamed M. Atalla
's work on surface passivation, as well as Fuller and Ditzenberger's work on the diffusion of boron and phosphorus impurities into silicon,
Carl Frosch Carl John Frosch (September 6, 1908 – May 18, 1984)Carl J Frosch (1908-1984)
Find A Grave was a ...
and Lincoln Derick's work on surface protection, and
Chih-Tang Sah Chih-Tang "Tom" Sah (; born in November 1932 in Beijing Beijing ( ), Chinese postal romanization, alternatively romanized as Peking ( ), is the Capital city, capital of the People's Republic of China. It is the world's List of national ca ...
's work on diffusion masking by the oxide.


First integrated circuits

A precursor idea to the IC was to create small ceramic substrates (so-called ''micromodules''), each containing a single miniaturized component. Components could then be integrated and wired into a bidimensional or tridimensional compact grid. This idea, which seemed very promising in 1957, was proposed to the US Army by
Jack Kilby Jack St. Clair Kilby (November 8, 1923 – June 20, 2005) was an American electrical engineer who took part (along with Robert Noyce of Fairchild) in the realization of the first integrated circuit while working at Texas Instruments (TI) in 1 ...
and led to the short-lived Micromodule Program (similar to 1951's Project Tinkertoy). However, as the project was gaining momentum, Kilby came up with a new, revolutionary design: the IC. Newly employed by
Texas Instruments Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) is an America The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country primarily located in North America North America is a ...
, Kilby recorded his initial ideas concerning the integrated circuit in July 1958, successfully demonstrating the first working example of an integrated circuit on 12 September 1958.''The Chip that Jack Built''
(c. 2008), (HTML), Texas Instruments, Retrieved 29 May 2008.
In his patent application of 6 February 1959, Kilby described his new device as "a body of semiconductor material … wherein all the components of the electronic circuit are completely integrated." The first customer for the new invention was the
US Air Force The United States Air Force (USAF) is the air File:Atmosphere gas proportions.svg, Composition of Earth's atmosphere by volume, excluding water vapor. Lower pie represents trace gases that together compose about 0.043391% of the atmosphe ...
. Kilby won the 2000
Nobel Prize The Nobel Prizes ( ; sv, Nobelpriset ; no, Nobelprisen ) are five separate prizes that, according to Alfred Nobel Alfred Bernhard Nobel ( , ; 21 October 1833 – 10 December 1896) was a Swedish chemist, engineer, inventor, busines ...
in physics for his part in the invention of the integrated circuit. However, Kilby's invention was a
hybrid integrated circuit 250px, An (orange-epoxy) encapsulated hybrid circuit on a printed circuit board. A hybrid integrated circuit (HIC), hybrid microcircuit, hybrid circuit or simply hybrid is a miniaturized electronic circuit 200px, A circuit built on a printed ...
(hybrid IC), rather than a monolithic integrated circuit (monolithic IC) chip. Kilby's IC had external wire connections, which made it difficult to mass-produce. Half a year after Kilby,
Robert Noyce Robert Norton Noyce (December 12, 1927 – June 3, 1990), nicknamed "the Mayor of Silicon Valley", was an American physicist and entrepreneur who co-founded Fairchild Semiconductor Fairchild Semiconductor International, Inc. was an American s ...
at
Fairchild Semiconductor Fairchild Semiconductor International, Inc. was an American semiconductor A semiconductor material has an electrical conductivity Electrical resistivity (also called specific electrical resistance or volume resistivity) is a fundamental pr ...
invented the first true monolithic IC chip. It was a new variety of integrated circuit, more practical than Kilby's implementation. Noyce's design was made of
silicon Silicon is a chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol Si and atomic number 14. It is a hard, brittle crystalline solid with a blue-grey metallic lustre, and is a Tetravalence, tetravalent metalloid and semiconductor. It is a member ...

silicon
, whereas Kilby's chip was made of
germanium Germanium is a chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol Ge and atomic number 32. It is a lustrous, hard-brittle, grayish-white metalloid in the carbon group, chemically similar to its group neighbors silicon and tin. Pure germanium i ...

germanium
. Noyce's monolithic IC put all components on a chip of silicon and connected them with copper lines. Noyce's monolithic IC was fabricated using the
planar process The planar process is a manufacturing process used in the semiconductor industry to build individual components of a transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal g ...
, developed in early 1959 by his colleague
Jean HoerniJean Amédée Hoerni (September 26, 1924 – January 12, 1997) was a Swiss-American engineer. He was a silicon transistor pioneer, and a member of the " traitorous eight". He developed the planar process, an important technology for reliably fabr ...
. Modern IC chips are based on Noyce's monolithic IC, rather than Kilby's hybrid IC. NASA's Apollo Program was the largest single consumer of integrated circuits between 1961 and 1965.Hall, Eldon C. (1996)
"Journey to the Moon: The History of the Apollo Guidance Computer"
American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. pp. 18–19.


TTL integrated circuits

Transistor–transistor logic Transistor–transistor logic (TTL) is a logic family In computer engineering Computer engineering (CoE or CpE) is a branch of engineering Engineering is the use of scientific method, scientific principles to design and build machine ...
(TTL) was developed by James L. Buie in the early 1960s at TRW Inc. TTL became the dominant integrated circuit technology during the 1970s to early 1980s. Dozens of TTL integrated circuits were a standard method of construction for the
processors A central processing unit (CPU), also called a central processor, main processor or just Processor (computing), processor, is the electronic circuitry that executes Instruction (computing), instructions comprising a computer program. The CPU per ...
of
minicomputers A minicomputer, or colloquially mini, is a class of smaller general purpose computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform gen ...
and
mainframe computers A mainframe computer, informally called a mainframe or big iron, is a computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic ...
.
Computers A computer is a machine that can be programmed to Execution (computing), carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of operations known as Computer program, programs. These p ...

Computers
such as
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mainframes,
PDP-11 The PDP-11 is a series of 16-bit 16-bit microcomputers are computers in which 16-bit microprocessors were the norm. A 16-bit register can store 216 different values. The range (computer programming), range of integer values that can be stored i ...
minicomputers and the desktop
Datapoint 2200 The Datapoint 2200 was a mass-produced desktop personal computer A personal computer (PC) is a multi-purpose computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatical ...
were built from bipolar integrated circuits, either TTL or the even faster
emitter-coupled logic In electronics, emitter-coupled logic (ECL) is a high-speed integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circuit 200px, A circuit bui ...
(ECL).


MOS integrated circuits

Nearly all modern IC chips are
metal–oxide–semiconductor The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect tran ...
(MOS) integrated circuits, built from
MOSFET The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...

MOSFET
s (metal–oxide–silicon field-effect transistors). The MOSFET (also known as the MOS transistor), which was invented by
Mohamed M. Atalla Mohamed M. Atalla ( ar, محمد عطاالله; August 4, 1924 – December 30, 2009) was an Egyptian-American engineer, physical chemist Physical chemistry is the study of macroscopic The macroscopic scale is the length scale on which ...

Mohamed M. Atalla
and
Dawon Kahng Dawon Kahng ( ko, 강대원; May 4, 1931 – May 13, 1992) was a Korean-American electrical engineer and inventor, known for his work in solid-state electronics Solid-state electronics means semiconductor A semiconductor material has an el ...

Dawon Kahng
at Bell Labs in 1959, made it possible to build high-density integrated circuits. In contrast to
bipolar transistors A bipolar junction transistor (BJT) is a type of transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal gate, gate (G), body (B), source (S) and drain (D) terminals. The ga ...
which required a number of steps for the
p–n junction isolation p–n junction isolation is a method used to electrically isolate electronic component An electronic component is any basic discrete device or physical entity in an electronic system used to affect electrons or their associated fields. Electr ...
of transistors on a chip, MOSFETs required no such steps but could be easily isolated from each other. Its advantage for integrated circuits was pointed out by Dawon Kahng in 1961. The
list of IEEE milestones The following timeline tables list the discoveries and inventions in the history of electrical Electricity is the set of physical phenomena associated with the presence and motion Image:Leaving Yongsan Station.jpg, 300px, Motion involves ...
includes the first integrated circuit by Kilby in 1958, Hoerni's planar process and Noyce's planar IC in 1959, and the MOSFET by Atalla and Kahng in 1959. The earliest experimental MOS IC to be fabricated was a 16-transistor chip built by Fred Heiman and Steven Hofstein at
RCA The RCA Corporation was a major American electronics company, which was founded as the Radio Corporation of America in 1919. It was initially a patent trust owned by General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American Multination ...
in 1962.
General Microelectronics General Microelectronics (GMe) was an American semiconductor A semiconductor material has an Electrical resistivity and conductivity, electrical conductivity value falling between that of a Electrical conductor, conductor, such as metallic copper ...
later introduced the first commercial MOS integrated circuit in 1964, a 120-transistor
shift register A shift register is a type of digital circuitIn theoretical computer science, a circuit is a model of computation in which input values proceed through a sequence of gates, each of which computes a function. Circuits of this kind provide a genera ...

shift register
developed by Robert Norman. By 1964, MOS chips had reached higher
transistor density upright=1.4, gate File:Kebun Raya Bali Candi Bentar IMG 8794.jpg, Candi bentar, a typical Indonesian gate that is often found on the islands of Java and Bali A gate or gateway is a point of entry to or from a space enclosed by walls. The w ...
and lower manufacturing costs than bipolar chips. MOS chips further increased in complexity at a rate predicted by
Moore's law Moore's law is the observation that the number of transistor upright=1.4, gate A gate or gateway is a point of entry to or from a space enclosed by walls. The word derived from old Norse "gat" meaning road A road is a thoroughfare ...
, leading to
large-scale integration An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circuit File:PExdcr01CJC.jpg, 200px, A circuit built on a printed circuit board (PCB). An electronic circuit i ...
(LSI) with hundreds of
transistors file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal gate, gate (G), body (B), source (S) and drain (D) terminals. The gate is separated from the body by an insulating layer (pink). A ...
on a single MOS chip by the late 1960s. Following the development of the
self-aligned gate In electronics The field of electronics is a branch of physics and electrical engineering that deals with the emission, behaviour and effects of electrons The electron is a subatomic particle In physical sciences, subatomic particles are ...
(silicon-gate) MOSFET by Robert Kerwin, Donald Klein and John Sarace at Bell Labs in 1967, the first silicon-gate MOS IC technology with
self-aligned gate In electronics The field of electronics is a branch of physics and electrical engineering that deals with the emission, behaviour and effects of electrons The electron is a subatomic particle In physical sciences, subatomic particles are ...
s, the basis of all modern
CMOS Complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor (CMOS, pronounced "see-moss"), also known as complementary-symmetry metal–oxide–semiconductor (COS-MOS), is a type of metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor The metal–oxide–sem ...
integrated circuits, was developed at Fairchild Semiconductor by
Federico Faggin Federico Faggin (, ; born 1 December 1941) is an Italian-American physicist, engineer, inventor and entrepreneur. He is best known for designing the first commercial microprocessor, the Intel 4004. He led the Intel 4004, 4004 (MCS-4) project and ...

Federico Faggin
in 1968. The application of MOS LSI chips to
computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimentation of algorithmic processes and development of both computer hardware , hardware and software. It has sci ...

computing
was the basis for the first
microprocessors A microprocessor is a computer processor where the data processing logic and control is included on a single integrated circuit, or a small number of integrated circuits. The microprocessor contains the arithmetic, logic, and control circuitr ...
, as engineers began recognizing that a complete
computer processor A central processing unit (CPU), also called a central processor, main processor or just Processor (computing), processor, is the electronic circuitry that executes Instruction (computing), instructions comprising a computer program. The CPU p ...
could be contained on a single MOS LSI chip. This led to the inventions of the microprocessor and the
microcontroller A microcontroller (MCU for ''microcontroller unit'') is a small computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of ...

microcontroller
by the early 1970s. During the early 1970s, MOS integrated circuit technology enabled the
very large-scale integration Very large-scale integration (VLSI) is the process of creating an integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circuits on one small f ...
(VLSI) of more than 10,000 transistors on a single chip. At first, MOS-based computers only made sense when high density was required, such as
aerospace Aerospace is a term used to collectively refer to the atmosphere An atmosphere (from the greek words ἀτμός ''(atmos)'', meaning 'vapour', and σφαῖρα ''(sphaira)'', meaning 'ball' or 'sphere') is a layer or a set of layers of g ...

aerospace
and
pocket calculators An electronic calculator is typically a portable Electronics, electronic device used to perform calculations, ranging from basic arithmetic to complex mathematics. The first Solid-state electronics, solid-state electronic calculator was created ...
. Computers built entirely from TTL, such as the 1970
Datapoint 2200 The Datapoint 2200 was a mass-produced desktop personal computer A personal computer (PC) is a multi-purpose computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatical ...
, were much faster and more powerful than single-chip MOS microprocessors such as the 1972
Intel 8008 The Intel 8008 ("''eight-thousand-eight''" or "''eighty-oh-eight''") is an early byte-oriented microprocessor A microprocessor is a computer processor where the data processing logic and control is included on a single integrated circuit, ...

Intel 8008
until the early 1980s.Ken Shirriff
"The Texas Instruments TMX 1795: the (almost) first, forgotten microprocessor"
2015.
Advances in IC technology, primarily smaller features and larger chips, have allowed the number of
MOS transistor The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...
s in an integrated circuit to double every two years, a trend known as Moore's law. Moore originally stated it would double every year, but he went on to change the claim to every two years in 1975. This increased capacity has been used to decrease cost and increase functionality. In general, as the feature size shrinks, almost every aspect of an IC's operation improves. The cost per transistor and the switching power consumption per transistor goes down, while the memory capacity and
speed In everyday use and in kinematics Kinematics is a subfield of physics, developed in classical mechanics, that describes the Motion (physics), motion of points, bodies (objects), and systems of bodies (groups of objects) without considerin ...
go up, through the relationships defined by
Dennard scalingDennard may refer to: People with the surname * Alfonzo Dennard, a professional American football cornerback, cousin to Darqueze * Amery Dennard, known as Big Herk, an American rapper * Brazeal Dennard, an American singer and educator * Darqueze ...
(
MOSFET scaling The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...
). Because speed, capacity, and power consumption gains are apparent to the end user, there is fierce competition among the manufacturers to use finer geometries. Over the years, transistor sizes have decreased from 10s of
microns The micrometre ( international spelling as used by the International Bureau of Weights and Measures The International Bureau of Weights and Measures (french: Bureau international des poids et mesures, BIPM) is an intergovernmental organ ...
in the early 1970s to 10
nanometers one nanometric Scanning_Tunneling_Microscope.html"_;"title="carbon_nano_tube,_photographed_with_Scanning_Tunneling_Microscope">carbon_nano_tube,_photographed_with_Scanning_Tunneling_Microscope_ file:EM_Spectrum_Properties_edit.svg.html" ;"title= ...
in 2017 with a corresponding million-fold increase in transistors per unit area. As of 2016, typical chip areas range from a few square
millimeters 330px, Different lengths as in respect to the Electromagnetic spectrum, measured by the Metre and its deriveds scales. The Microwave are in-between 1 meter to 1 millimeter. The millimetre (American and British English spelling differences#-re, - ...
to around 600 mm2, with up to 25 million
transistor upright=1.4, gate A gate or gateway is a point of entry to or from a space enclosed by walls. The word derived from old Norse "gat" meaning road A road is a thoroughfare, route, or way on land between two Location (geography), places tha ...

transistor
s per mm2.. 15,300,000,000 transistors in 610 mm2. The expected shrinking of feature sizes and the needed progress in related areas was forecast for many years by the
International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors The International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) is a set of documents produced by a group of semiconductor industry The semiconductor industry is the aggregate of companies engaged in the design A design is a plan or specifica ...
(ITRS). The final ITRS was issued in 2016, and it is being replaced by the
International Roadmap for Devices and SystemsThe International Roadmap for Devices and Systems, or IRDS, is a set of predictions about likely developments in electronic devices and systems. The IRDS was established in 2016 and is the successor to the International Technology Roadmap for Semicon ...
. Initially, ICs were strictly electronic devices. The success of ICs has led to the integration of other technologies, in an attempt to obtain the same advantages of small size and low cost. These technologies include mechanical devices, optics, and sensors. *
Charge-coupled device A charge-coupled device (CCD) is an integrated circuit containing an array of linked, or coupled, capacitors. Under the control of an external circuit, each capacitor can transfer its electric charge to a neighboring capacitor. CCD sensors are a ...
s, and the closely related
active-pixel sensorAn active-pixel sensor (APS) is an image sensor where each pixel sensor unit cell has a photodetector Photodetectors, also called photosensors, are sensors of light Light or visible light is electromagnetic radiation within the portion o ...
s, are chips that are sensitive to
light Light or visible light is electromagnetic radiation within the portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that is visual perception, perceived by the human eye. Visible light is usually defined as having wavelengths in the range of 400–700 nan ...

light
. They have largely replaced
photographic film Photographic film is a strip or sheet of transparent film baseA film base is a transparent substrate which acts as a support medium for the photosensitive emulsion An emulsion is a mixture of two or more liquids that are normally Miscibil ...
in scientific, medical, and consumer applications. Billions of these devices are now produced each year for applications such as cellphones, tablets, and digital cameras. This sub-field of ICs won the Nobel Prize in 2009.. * Very small mechanical devices driven by electricity can be integrated onto chips, a technology known as
microelectromechanical systems Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), also written as micro-electro-mechanical systems (or microelectronic and microelectromechanical systems) and the related micromechatronics and microsystems constitute the technology of microscopic devices, p ...
. These devices were developed in the late 1980s and are used in a variety of commercial and military applications. Examples include
DLP projector Digital Light Processing (DLP) is a set of chipsets based on optical MEMS, micro-electro-mechanical technology that uses a digital micromirror device. It was originally developed in 1987 by Larry Hornbeck of Texas Instruments. While the DLP imagi ...
s,
inkjet printer Inkjet printing is a type of computer printing File:Printer.ogv, A video showing an Inkjet printing, inkjet printer while printing a page. In computing, a printer is a peripheral machine which makes a persistent representation of graphic ...
s, and
accelerometer An accelerometer is a tool that measures . Proper acceleration is the (the of ) of a body in its own instantaneous ; this is different from coordinate acceleration, which is acceleration in a fixed . For example, an accelerometer at rest on the s ...

accelerometer
s and
MEMS gyroscope A vibrating structure gyroscope, defined by the IEEE as a Coriolis vibratory gyroscope (CVG), is a gyroscope that uses a vibrating structure to determine the rate of rotation. A vibrating structure gyroscope functions much like the halteres of fli ...
s used to deploy automobile
airbag An airbag is a vehicle occupant-restraint system using a bag designed to inflate extremely quickly, then quickly deflate during a Traffic collision, collision. It consists of the airbag cushion, a flexible fabric bag, an inflation module, and an ...

airbag
s. * Since the early 2000s, the integration of optical functionality (
optical computing Optical computing or photonic computing uses photon The photon ( el, φῶς, phōs, light) is a type of elementary particle In particle physics, an elementary particle or fundamental particle is a subatomic particle that is not composed of oth ...
) into silicon chips has been actively pursued in both academic research and in industry resulting in the successful commercialization of silicon based integrated optical transceivers combining optical devices (modulators, detectors, routing) with CMOS based electronics.
Photonic integrated circuitA photonic integrated circuit (PIC) or integrated optical circuit is a device that integrates multiple (at least two) photonic functions and as such is similar to an electronic integrated circuit. The major difference between the two is that a photon ...
s that use light are also being developed, using the emerging field of physics known as
photonics Photonics is the physical science Physical science is a branch of natural science that studies abiotic component, non-living systems, in contrast to life science. It in turn has many branches, each referred to as a "physical science", together ...
. * Integrated circuits are also being developed for
sensor A sensor is a device that produces an output signal for the purpose of sensing of a physical phenomenon. In the broadest definition, a sensor is a device, module, machine, or subsystem that detects events or changes in its environment and s ...

sensor
applications in medical implants or other bioelectronic devices. Special sealing techniques have to be applied in such biogenic environments to avoid
corrosion Corrosion is a that converts a refined metal into a more chemically stable form such as , , or . It is the gradual destruction of materials (usually a ) by chemical and/or electrochemical reaction with their environment. is the field dedica ...

corrosion
or
biodegradation Biodegradation is the breakdown of organic matter Organic matter, organic material, or natural organic matter refers to the large source of Carbon compounds, carbon-based compounds found within natural and engineered, terrestrial, and aquatic ...
of the exposed semiconductor materials. , the vast majority of all transistors are
MOSFET The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...

MOSFET
s fabricated in a single layer on one side of a chip of silicon in a flat two-dimensional
planar process The planar process is a manufacturing process used in the semiconductor industry to build individual components of a transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal g ...
. Researchers have produced prototypes of several promising alternatives, such as: * various approaches to stacking several layers of transistors to make a
three-dimensional integrated circuit A three-dimensional integrated circuit (3D IC) is a MOS (metal-oxide semiconductor) integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circui ...
(3DIC), such as
through-silicon via In electronic engineering Printed circuit board Electronic engineering (also called electronics and communications engineering) is an electrical engineering discipline which utilizes nonlinear and active electrical components (such as semic ...
, "monolithic 3D", stacked wire bonding, and other methodologies. * transistors built from other materials:
graphene transistor Potential graphene applications include lightweight, thin, and flexible electric/photonics circuits, solar cells, and various medical, chemical and industrial processes enhanced or enabled by the use of new graphene materials. In 2008, graphene ...
s, molybdenite#Semiconductor, molybdenite transistors, carbon nanotube field-effect transistor, gallium nitride transistor, transistor-like nanowire#Electronic devices, nanowire electronic devices, organic field-effect transistor, etc. * fabricating transistors over the entire surface of a small sphere of silicon. * modifications to the substrate, typically to make "transistor#Flexible transistors, flexible transistors" for a flexible display or other flexible electronics, possibly leading to a roll-away computer. As it becomes more difficult to manufacture ever smaller transistors, companies are using multi-chip modules,
three-dimensional integrated circuit A three-dimensional integrated circuit (3D IC) is a MOS (metal-oxide semiconductor) integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circui ...
s, package on package, High Bandwidth Memory and
through-silicon via In electronic engineering Printed circuit board Electronic engineering (also called electronics and communications engineering) is an electrical engineering discipline which utilizes nonlinear and active electrical components (such as semic ...
s with die stacking to increase performance and reduce size, without having to reduce the size of the transistors. Such techniques are collectively known as advanced packaging. Advanced packaging is mainly divided into 2.5D and 3D packaging. 2.5D describes approaches such as multi-chip modules while 3D describes approaches where dies are stacked in one way or another, such as package on package and high bandwidth memory. All approaches involve 2 or more dies in a single package. Alternatively, approaches such as 3D NAND stack multiple layers on a single die.


Design

The cost of Integrated circuit design, designing and developing a complex integrated circuit is quite high, normally in the multiple tens of millions of dollars. Therefore, it only makes economic sense to produce integrated circuit products with high production volume, so the non-recurring engineering (NRE) costs are spread across typically millions of production units. Modern semiconductor chips have billions of components, and are too complex to be designed by hand. Software tools to help the designer are essential. Electronic Design Automation (EDA), also referred to as Electronic Computer-aided design, Computer-Aided Design (ECAD), is a category of software tools for designing electronics, electronic systems, including integrated circuits. The tools work together in a Design flow (EDA), design flow that engineers use to design and analyze entire semiconductor chips.


Types

Integrated circuits can be classified into analog circuit, analog, digital circuit, digital and mixed-signal integrated circuit, mixed signal, consisting of analog and digital signaling on the same IC. Digital integrated circuits can contain billions of logic gates, flip-flop (electronics), flip-flops, multiplexers, and other circuits in a few square millimeters. The small size of these circuits allows high speed, low power dissipation, and reduced manufacturing cost compared with board-level integration. These digital ICs, typically microprocessors, Digital signal processor, DSPs, and
microcontroller A microcontroller (MCU for ''microcontroller unit'') is a small computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of ...

microcontroller
s, use boolean algebra to process Binary number, "one" and "zero" signals. Among the most advanced integrated circuits are the microprocessors or "Processor core, cores", used in personal computers, cell-phones, microwave ovens, etc. Digital Computer memory, memory chips and application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs) are examples of other families of integrated circuits. In the 1980s, programmable logic devices were developed. These devices contain circuits whose logical function and connectivity can be programmed by the user, rather than being fixed by the integrated circuit manufacturer. This allows a chip to be programmed to do various LSI-type functions such as logic gates, adder (electronics), adders and processor register, registers. Programmability comes in various forms – devices that can be Programmable read-only memory, programmed only once, devices that can be erased and then re-programmed EPROM, using UV light, devices that can be (re)programmed using flash memory, and field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) which can be programmed at any time, including during operation. Current FPGAs can (as of 2016) implement the equivalent of millions of gates and operate at Clock rate, frequencies up to 1 Hertz, GHz. Analog ICs, such as
sensor A sensor is a device that produces an output signal for the purpose of sensing of a physical phenomenon. In the broadest definition, a sensor is a device, module, machine, or subsystem that detects events or changes in its environment and s ...

sensor
s, power network design (IC), power management circuits, and operational amplifiers (op-amps), process continuous signals, and perform analog functions such as Amplifier, amplification, active filtering, demodulation, and Frequency mixer, mixing. ICs can combine analog and digital circuits on a chip to create functions such as analog-to-digital converters and digital-to-analog converters. Such mixed-signal circuits offer smaller size and lower cost, but must account for signal interference. Prior to the late 1990s, radios could not be fabricated in the same low-cost
CMOS Complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor (CMOS, pronounced "see-moss"), also known as complementary-symmetry metal–oxide–semiconductor (COS-MOS), is a type of metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor The metal–oxide–sem ...
processes as microprocessors. But since 1998, radio chips have been developed using RF CMOS processes. Examples include Intel's Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications, DECT cordless phone, or 802.11 (Wi-Fi) chips created by Atheros and other companies. Modern :electronic component distributors, electronic component distributors often further sub-categorize integrated circuits: * Digital integrated circuit, Digital ICs are categorized as logic ICs (such as
microprocessors A microprocessor is a computer processor where the data processing logic and control is included on a single integrated circuit, or a small number of integrated circuits. The microprocessor contains the arithmetic, logic, and control circuitr ...
and microcontrollers), memory chips (such as MOS memory and floating-gate memory), interface ICs (logic level, level shifters, serializer/deserializer, etc.), power management ICs, and Programmable logic device, programmable devices. * Analog integrated circuit, Analog ICs are categorized as linear integrated circuits and RF circuits (radio frequency circuits). * Mixed-signal integrated circuits are categorized as data acquisition ICs (including A/D converters, D/A converters, digital potentiometers), Clock generator, clock/timing ICs, switched capacitor (SC) circuits, and RF CMOS circuits. * Three-dimensional integrated circuits (3D ICs) are categorized into
through-silicon via In electronic engineering Printed circuit board Electronic engineering (also called electronics and communications engineering) is an electrical engineering discipline which utilizes nonlinear and active electrical components (such as semic ...
(TSV) ICs and Cu-Cu connection ICs.


Manufacturing


Fabrication

The
semiconductor A semiconductor material has an value falling between that of a , such as metallic copper, and an , such as glass. Its falls as its temperature rises; metals behave in the opposite way. Its conducting properties may be altered in useful ways ...
s of the periodic table of the chemical elements were identified as the most likely materials for a ''Solid-state electronics, solid-state vacuum tube''. Starting with copper(I) oxide, copper oxide, proceeding to
germanium Germanium is a chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol Ge and atomic number 32. It is a lustrous, hard-brittle, grayish-white metalloid in the carbon group, chemically similar to its group neighbors silicon and tin. Pure germanium i ...

germanium
, then
silicon Silicon is a chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol Si and atomic number 14. It is a hard, brittle crystalline solid with a blue-grey metallic lustre, and is a Tetravalence, tetravalent metalloid and semiconductor. It is a member ...

silicon
, the materials were systematically studied in the 1940s and 1950s. Today, monocrystalline silicon is the main Substrate (printing), substrate used for ICs although some III-V compound semiconductor, compounds of the periodic table such as gallium arsenide are used for specialized applications like Light-emitting diode, LEDs, lasers, solar cells and the highest-speed integrated circuits. It took decades to perfect methods of creating crystals with minimal Crystal defects, defects in semiconducting materials' crystal structure. Semiconductor ICs are fabricated in a
planar process The planar process is a manufacturing process used in the semiconductor industry to build individual components of a transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal g ...
which includes three key process steps
photolithography In manufacturing, photolithography or optical lithography is a general term for techniques that use to produce minutely patterned s of suitable materials over a substrate, such as a , to protect selected areas of it during subsequent , , or op ...
, deposition (such as chemical vapor deposition), and Etching (microfabrication), etching. The main process steps are supplemented by doping and cleaning. More recent or high-performance ICs may instead use multigate device, multi-gate FinFET or GAAFET transistors instead of planar ones, starting at the 22 nm node (Intel) or 16/14 nm nodes. Monocrystalline silicon, Mono-crystal silicon wafer (electronics), wafers are used in most applications (or for special applications, other semiconductors such as gallium arsenide are used). The wafer need not be entirely silicon. Photolithography is used to mark different areas of the substrate to be Doping (semiconductor), doped or to have polysilicon, insulators or metal (typically aluminium or copper) tracks deposited on them. Dopants are impurities intentionally introduced to a semiconductor to modulate its electronic properties. Doping is the process of adding dopants to a semiconductor material. * Integrated circuits are composed of many overlapping layers, each defined by photolithography, and normally shown in different colors. Some layers mark where various dopants are diffused into the substrate (called diffusion layers), some define where additional ions are implanted (implant layers), some define the conductors (doped polysilicon or metal layers), and some define the connections between the conducting layers (via or contact layers). All components are constructed from a specific combination of these layers. * In a self-aligned
CMOS Complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor (CMOS, pronounced "see-moss"), also known as complementary-symmetry metal–oxide–semiconductor (COS-MOS), is a type of metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor The metal–oxide–sem ...
process, a
transistor upright=1.4, gate A gate or gateway is a point of entry to or from a space enclosed by walls. The word derived from old Norse "gat" meaning road A road is a thoroughfare, route, or way on land between two Location (geography), places tha ...

transistor
is formed wherever the gate layer (polysilicon or metal) crosses a diffusion layer. * capacitor, Capacitive structures, in form very much like the Parallel-plate capacitor, parallel conducting plates of a traditional electrical capacitor, are formed according to the area of the "plates", with insulating material between the plates. Capacitors of a wide range of sizes are common on ICs. * Meandering stripes of varying lengths are sometimes used to form on-chip resistors, though most logic circuits do not need any resistors. The ratio of the length of the resistive structure to its width, combined with its sheet resistivity, determines the resistance. * More rarely, inductor, inductive structures can be built as tiny on-chip coils, or simulated by gyrators. Since a CMOS device only draws current on the ''State transition function, transition'' between boolean algebra (logic), logic State (computer science), states, CMOS devices consume much less current than bipolar junction transistor devices. A random-access memory is the most regular type of integrated circuit; the highest density devices are thus memories; but even a microprocessor will have memory on the chip. (See the regular array structure at the bottom of the first image.) Although the structures are intricate – with widths which have been shrinking for decades – the layers remain much thinner than the device widths. The layers of material are fabricated much like a photographic process, although light waves in the visible spectrum cannot be used to "expose" a layer of material, as they would be too large for the features. Thus photons of higher frequencies (typically ultraviolet) are used to create the patterns for each layer. Because each feature is so small, electron microscopes are essential tools for a Industrial processes, process engineer who might be debugging a fabrication process. Each device is tested before packaging using automated test equipment (ATE), in a process known as wafer testing, or wafer probing. The wafer is then cut into rectangular blocks, each of which is called a ''die (integrated circuit), die''. Each good die (plural ''dice'', ''dies'', or ''die'') is then connected into a package using aluminium (or gold) Wire bonding, bond wires which are Thermosonic bonding, thermosonically bonded to ''pads'', usually found around the edge of the die. Thermosonic bonding was first introduced by A. Coucoulas which provided a reliable means of forming these vital electrical connections to the outside world. After packaging, the devices go through final testing on the same or similar ATE used during wafer probing. Industrial CT scanning can also be used. Test cost can account for over 25% of the cost of fabrication on lower-cost products, but can be negligible on low-yielding, larger, or higher-cost devices. , a Semiconductor fabrication plant, fabrication facility (commonly known as a ''semiconductor fab'') can cost over US$8 billion to construct. The cost of a fabrication facility rises over time because of increased complexity of new products; this is known as Rock's law. Such a facility features: * The Wafer (electronics), wafers up to 300 mm in diameter (wider than a common Plate (dishware), dinner plate). * * Copper interconnects where copper wiring replaces aluminum for interconnects. * Low-κ dielectric Insulator (electricity), insulators. * Silicon on insulator (SOI). * Strained silicon in a process used by IBM known as Strained silicon directly on insulator (SSDOI). * Multigate devices such as tri-gate transistors. ICs can be manufactured either in-house by integrated device manufacturers (IDMs) or using the foundry model. IDMs are vertically integrated companies (like Intel and Samsung) that design, manufacture and sell their own ICs, and may offer design and/or manufacturing (foundry) services to other companies (the latter often to fabless company, fabless companies). In the foundry model, fabless companies (like Nvidia only design and sell ICs and outsource all manufacturing to pure play#pure play foundries, pure play foundries such as TSMC. These foundries may offer IC design services.


Packaging

The earliest integrated circuits were packaged in ceramic Flatpack (electronics), flat packs, which continued to be used by the military for their reliability and small size for many years. Commercial circuit packaging quickly moved to the dual in-line package (DIP), first in ceramic and later in plastic, which is commonly cresol-formaldehyde-novolac. In the 1980s pin counts of VLSI circuits exceeded the practical limit for DIP packaging, leading to pin grid array (PGA) and leadless chip carrier (LCC) packages. Surface-mount technology, Surface mount packaging appeared in the early 1980s and became popular in the late 1980s, using finer lead pitch with leads formed as either gull-wing or J-lead, as exemplified by the Small Outline Integrated Circuit, small-outline integrated circuit (SOIC) package – a carrier which occupies an area about 30–50% less than an equivalent DIP and is typically 70% thinner. This package has "gull wing" leads protruding from the two long sides and a lead spacing of 0.050 inches. In the late 1990s, PQFP, plastic quad flat pack (PQFP) and Thin Small Outline Package, thin small-outline package (TSOP) packages became the most common for high pin count devices, though PGA packages are still used for high-end microprocessors. Ball grid array (BGA) packages have existed since the 1970s. Flip chip, Flip-chip Ball Grid Array packages, which allow for a much higher pin count than other package types, were developed in the 1990s. In an FCBGA package, the die is mounted upside-down (flipped) and connects to the package balls via a package substrate that is similar to a printed-circuit board rather than by wires. FCBGA packages allow an array of Input/output, input-output signals (called Area-I/O) to be distributed over the entire die rather than being confined to the die periphery. BGA devices have the advantage of not needing a dedicated socket but are much harder to replace in case of device failure. Intel transitioned away from PGA to land grid array (LGA) and BGA beginning in 2004, with the last PGA socket released in 2014 for mobile platforms. , AMD uses PGA packages on mainstream desktop processors, BGA packages on mobile processors, and high-end desktop and server microprocessors use LGA packages. Electrical signals leaving the die must pass through the material electrically connecting the die to the package, through the conductive signal trace, traces (paths) in the package, through the leads connecting the package to the conductive traces on the printed circuit board. The materials and structures used in the path these electrical signals must travel have very different electrical properties, compared to those that travel to different parts of the same die. As a result, they require special design techniques to ensure the signals are not corrupted, and much more electric power than signals confined to the die itself. When multiple dies are put in one package, the result is a system in package, abbreviated . A multi-chip module (), is created by combining multiple dies on a small substrate often made of ceramic. The distinction between a large MCM and a small printed circuit board is sometimes fuzzy. Packaged integrated circuits are usually large enough to include identifying information. Four common sections are the manufacturer's name or logo, the part number, a part production batch number and serial number, and a four-digit date-code to identify when the chip was manufactured. Extremely small surface-mount technology parts often bear only a number used in a manufacturer's lookup table to find the integrated circuit's characteristics. The manufacturing date is commonly represented as a two-digit year followed by a two-digit week code, such that a part bearing the code 8341 was manufactured in week 41 of 1983, or approximately in October 1983.


Intellectual property

The possibility of copying by photographing each layer of an integrated circuit and preparing photomasks for its production on the basis of the photographs obtained is a reason for the introduction of legislation for the protection of layout designs. The US Semiconductor Chip Protection Act of 1984 established intellectual property protection for photomasks used to produce integrated circuits. A diplomatic conference held at Washington, D.C. in 1989 adopted a Treaty on Intellectual Property in Respect of Integrated Circuits, also called the Washington Treaty or IPIC Treaty. The treaty is currently not in force, but was partially integrated into the TRIPS agreement. National laws protecting IC layout designs have been adopted in a number of countries, including Japan, the European Economic Community, EC, the UK, Australia, and Korea. The UK enacted the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, c. 48, § 213, after it initially took the position that its copyright law fully protected chip topographies. See British Leyland Motor Corp. v. Armstrong Patents Co. Criticisms of inadequacy of the UK copyright approach as perceived by the US semiconductor industry, chip industry are summarized in further chip rights developments. Australia passed the Circuit Layouts Act of 1989 as a ''sui generis'' form of chip protection. Korea passed the ''Act Concerning the Layout-Design of Semiconductor Integrated Circuits''.


Generations

In the early days of simple integrated circuits, the technology's large scale limited each chip to only a few
transistors file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing Metal gate, gate (G), body (B), source (S) and drain (D) terminals. The gate is separated from the body by an insulating layer (pink). A ...
, and the low degree of integration meant the design process was relatively simple. First pass yield, Manufacturing yields were also quite low by today's standards. As
metal–oxide–semiconductor The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect tran ...
(MOS) technology progressed, millions and then billions of
MOS transistor The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...
s could be placed on one chip, and good designs required thorough planning, giving rise to the field of electronic design automation, or EDA. Some SSI and MSI chips, like discrete transistors, are still mass-produced, both to maintain old equipment and build new devices that require only a few gates. The 7400-series integrated circuits, 7400 series of Transistor–transistor logic, TTL chips, for example, has become a de facto standard and remains in production.


Small-scale integration (SSI)

The first integrated circuits contained only a few transistors. Early digital circuits containing tens of transistors provided a few logic gates, and early linear ICs such as the Plessey SL201 or the Philips TAA320 had as few as two transistors. The number of transistors in an integrated circuit has increased dramatically since then. The term "large scale integration" (LSI) was first used by IBM scientist Rolf Landauer when describing the theoretical concept; that term gave rise to the terms "small-scale integration" (SSI), "medium-scale integration" (MSI), "very-large-scale integration" (VLSI), and "ultra-large-scale integration" (ULSI). The early integrated circuits were SSI. SSI circuits were crucial to early
aerospace Aerospace is a term used to collectively refer to the atmosphere An atmosphere (from the greek words ἀτμός ''(atmos)'', meaning 'vapour', and σφαῖρα ''(sphaira)'', meaning 'ball' or 'sphere') is a layer or a set of layers of g ...

aerospace
projects, and aerospace projects helped inspire development of the technology. Both the LGM-30 Minuteman, Minuteman missile and Apollo program needed lightweight digital computers for their inertial guidance systems. Although the Apollo Guidance Computer led and motivated integrated-circuit technology, it was the Minuteman missile that forced it into mass-production. The Minuteman missile program and various other United States Navy programs accounted for the total $4 million integrated circuit market in 1962, and by 1968, U.S. Government spending on Budget of NASA, space and Military budget of the United States, defense still accounted for 37% of the $312 million total production. The demand by the U.S. Government supported the nascent integrated circuit market until costs fell enough to allow IC firms to penetrate the Industry (manufacturing), industrial market and eventually the consumer market. The average price per integrated circuit dropped from $50.00 in 1962 to $2.33 in 1968. Integrated circuits began to appear in consumer products by the turn of the 1970s decade. A typical application was Frequency modulation, FM inter-carrier sound processing in television receivers. The first application MOSFET, MOS chips were small-scale integration (SSI) chips. Following
Mohamed M. Atalla Mohamed M. Atalla ( ar, محمد عطاالله; August 4, 1924 – December 30, 2009) was an Egyptian-American engineer, physical chemist Physical chemistry is the study of macroscopic The macroscopic scale is the length scale on which ...

Mohamed M. Atalla
's proposal of the MOS integrated circuit chip in 1960, the earliest experimental MOS chip to be fabricated was a 16-transistor chip built by Fred Heiman and Steven Hofstein at
RCA The RCA Corporation was a major American electronics company, which was founded as the Radio Corporation of America in 1919. It was initially a patent trust owned by General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American Multination ...
in 1962. The first practical application of MOS SSI chips was for NASA satellites.


Medium-scale integration (MSI)

The next step in the development of integrated circuits introduced devices which contained hundreds of transistors on each chip, called "medium-scale integration" (MSI).
MOSFET scaling The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...
technology made it possible to build high-density chips. By 1964, MOS chips had reached higher
transistor density upright=1.4, gate File:Kebun Raya Bali Candi Bentar IMG 8794.jpg, Candi bentar, a typical Indonesian gate that is often found on the islands of Java and Bali A gate or gateway is a point of entry to or from a space enclosed by walls. The w ...
and lower manufacturing costs than bipolar chips. In 1964, Frank Wanlass demonstrated a single-chip 16-bit
shift register A shift register is a type of digital circuitIn theoretical computer science, a circuit is a model of computation in which input values proceed through a sequence of gates, each of which computes a function. Circuits of this kind provide a genera ...

shift register
he designed, with a then-incredible 120
MOS transistor The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...
s on a single chip. The same year,
General Microelectronics General Microelectronics (GMe) was an American semiconductor A semiconductor material has an Electrical resistivity and conductivity, electrical conductivity value falling between that of a Electrical conductor, conductor, such as metallic copper ...
introduced the first commercial MOS integrated circuit chip, consisting of 120 PMOS logic, p-channel MOS transistors. It was a 20-bit
shift register A shift register is a type of digital circuitIn theoretical computer science, a circuit is a model of computation in which input values proceed through a sequence of gates, each of which computes a function. Circuits of this kind provide a genera ...

shift register
, developed by Robert Norman and Frank Wanlass. MOS chips further increased in complexity at a rate predicted by
Moore's law Moore's law is the observation that the number of transistor upright=1.4, gate A gate or gateway is a point of entry to or from a space enclosed by walls. The word derived from old Norse "gat" meaning road A road is a thoroughfare ...
, leading to chips with hundreds of
MOSFET The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...

MOSFET
s on a chip by the late 1960s.


Large-scale integration (LSI)

Further development, driven by the same MOSFET scaling technology and economic factors, led to "large-scale integration" (LSI) by the mid-1970s, with tens of thousands of transistors per chip. The masks used to process and manufacture SSI, MSI and early LSI and VLSI devices (such as the microprocessors of the early 1970s) were mostly created by hand, often using Rubylith-tape or similar. For large or complex ICs (such as Computer memory, memories or Processor (computing), processors), this was often done by specially hired professionals in charge of circuit layout, placed under the supervision of a team of engineers, who would also, along with the circuit designers, inspect and Functional verification, verify the correctness and completeness of each mask. Integrated circuits such as 1K-bit RAMs, calculator chips, and the first microprocessors, that began to be manufactured in moderate quantities in the early 1970s, had under 4,000 transistors. True LSI circuits, approaching 10,000 transistors, began to be produced around 1974, for computer main memories and second-generation microprocessors.


Very-large-scale integration (VLSI)

"Very-large-scale integration" (VLSI) is a development started with hundreds of thousands of transistors in the early 1980s, and, as of 2016, transistor counts continue to grow beyond ten billion transistors per chip. Multiple developments were required to achieve this increased density. Manufacturers moved to smaller
MOSFET The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...

MOSFET
design rules and cleanroom, cleaner fabrication facilities. The path of process improvements was summarized by the
International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors The International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) is a set of documents produced by a group of semiconductor industry The semiconductor industry is the aggregate of companies engaged in the design A design is a plan or specifica ...
(ITRS), which has since been succeeded by the
International Roadmap for Devices and SystemsThe International Roadmap for Devices and Systems, or IRDS, is a set of predictions about likely developments in electronic devices and systems. The IRDS was established in 2016 and is the successor to the International Technology Roadmap for Semicon ...
(IRDS). Electronic design automation, Electronic design tools improved, making it practical to finish designs in a reasonable time. The more energy-efficient
CMOS Complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor (CMOS, pronounced "see-moss"), also known as complementary-symmetry metal–oxide–semiconductor (COS-MOS), is a type of metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor The metal–oxide–sem ...
replaced NMOS logic, NMOS and PMOS logic, PMOS, avoiding a prohibitive increase in Energy consumption, power consumption. The complexity and density of modern VLSI devices made it no longer feasible to check the masks or do the original design by hand. Instead, engineers use tools to perform most functional verification work. In 1986, one-megabit random-access memory (RAM) chips were introduced, containing more than one million transistors. Microprocessor chips passed the million-transistor mark in 1989 and the billion-transistor mark in 2005. The trend continues largely unabated, with chips introduced in 2007 containing tens of billions of memory transistors.


ULSI, WSI, SoC and 3D-IC

To reflect further growth of the complexity, the term ''ULSI'' that stands for "ultra-large-scale integration" was proposed for chips of more than 1 million transistors. Wafer-scale integration (WSI) is a means of building very large integrated circuits that uses an entire silicon wafer to produce a single "super-chip". Through a combination of large size and reduced packaging, WSI could lead to dramatically reduced costs for some systems, notably massively parallel supercomputers. The name is taken from the term Very-Large-Scale Integration, the current state of the art when WSI was being developed. A system-on-a-chip (SoC or SOC) is an integrated circuit in which all the components needed for a computer or other system are included on a single chip. The design of such a device can be complex and costly, and whilst performance benefits can be had from integrating all needed components on one die, the cost of licensing and developing a one-die machine still outweigh having separate devices. With appropriate licensing, these drawbacks are offset by lower manufacturing and assembly costs and by a greatly reduced power budget: because signals among the components are kept on-die, much less power is required (see #Packaging, Packaging). Further, signal sources and destinations are Locality of reference, physically closer on die, reducing the length of wiring and therefore Latency (engineering), latency, Data transmission, transmission power costs and waste heat from communication between modules on the same chip. This has led to an exploration of so-called Network on a chip, Network-on-Chip (NoC) devices, which apply system-on-chip design methodologies to digital communication networks as opposed to traditional Bus (computing), bus architectures. A
three-dimensional integrated circuit A three-dimensional integrated circuit (3D IC) is a MOS (metal-oxide semiconductor) integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circui ...
(3D-IC) has two or more layers of active electronic components that are integrated both vertically and horizontally into a single circuit. Communication between layers uses on-die signaling, so power consumption is much lower than in equivalent separate circuits. Judicious use of short vertical wires can substantially reduce overall wire length for faster operation.


Silicon labeling and graffiti

To allow identification during production most silicon chips will have a serial number in one corner. It is also common to add the manufacturer's logo. Ever since ICs were created, some chip designers have used the silicon surface area for surreptitious, non-functional images or words. These are sometimes referred to as chip art, silicon art, silicon graffiti or silicon doodling.


ICs and IC families

* The 555 timer IC * The Operational amplifier * 7400-series integrated circuits * 4000-series integrated circuits, the CMOS counterpart to the 7400 series (see also: HCMOS, 74HC00 series) * Intel 4004, generally regarded as the first commercially available microprocessor, which led to the famous Intel 8080, 8080 CPU and then the IBM PC's Intel 8088, 8088, 80286, Intel i486, 486 etc. * The MOS Technology 6502 and Zilog Z80 microprocessors, used in many home computers of the early 1980s * The Motorola 6800 series of computer-related chips, leading to the 68000 and 88000 series (used in some Apple computers and in the 1980s Commodore Amiga series) * The List of LM-series integrated circuits, LM-series of analog integrated circuits


See also

* Chipset * Integrated injection logic * Ion implantation *Microelectronics * Monolithic microwave integrated circuit * Multi-threshold CMOS * Silicon-germanium * Sound chip * SPICE * Chip carrier *Dark silicon *Integrated passive devices *High-temperature operating life *Thermal simulations for integrated circuits *Heat generation in integrated circuits


References


Further reading

* * * * * * *


External links

* General
The first monolithic integrated circuits


including access to most of the datasheets for the parts.
The History of the Integrated Circuit
at ''Nobelprize.org'' Patents * – Miniaturized electronic circuit – Jack Kilby, J.S. Kilby * – Integrated semiconductor circuit device – R.F. Stewart * – Method of making miniaturized electronic circuits – J.S. Kilby * – Capacitor for miniaturized electronic circuits or the like – J. . Kilby Integrated circuit die manufacturing
IC Die Photography
– A gallery of IC die photographs
Zeptobars
– Yet another gallery of IC die photographs {{Authority control Integrated circuits, 1949 in computing 20th-century inventions American inventions Computer-related introductions in 1949 Digital electronics Discovery and invention controversies German inventions Semiconductor devices