ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Computer microchip. Close-up of the surface of a microchip, a piece of silicon that has been microscopically etched and chemically engineered to form an integrated circuit (IC). The central area is the microchip proper, while thin printed circuit lines lead outwards from the microchip to the surrounding square of connection points (seen in the corners of the image). Thin wires are used to connect these points to the larger circuit (not seen) of which this microchip is a part. These scaling stages allow the microscopic circuitry to interact with macroscopic circuits. A microchip, the central processing unit (CPU) of a computer, processes many calculations every second.
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