MANFRED KAGE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MANFRED KAGE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Macrophoto of a wafer of individual IBM 4 Megabyte (Mb) memory chips (integrated circuits). Individual integrated circuits (chips) are made from circular wafers, initially cut from a cylinder of pure semiconductor material such as silicon or gallium arsenide. The complex pattern of circuits that comprises each chip is built-up in a series of processes involving masks, deposition of insulators and etchings. Finished chips are eventually diced from the wafer prior to packaging.
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