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Sunday, February 22, 2015

#320 Atomic-scale technology - horizontally!

What is even more impressive than the atomic-scale manipulation of vertical dimensions (see previous blog) is our ability to manipulate semiconductors and other solids  and to create horizontal atomic-scale geometries.


While in the vertical manipulations atom-by-atom deposition is relatively easy to implement these days, definition of horizontal nano-geaometries depends entirely on the resolution of the lithographic processes and precision of the follow up etching processes. In spite of the all so well recognized lithography resolution's related challenges, atomic-scale definition of the horizontal features is the reality.


Just consider for instance less than 10 nm wide "fins" formed on the wafer surface during the FinFET fabrication. Based on the numbers considered in the previous blog, a 5 nm "fin" is an about 20 atoms wide. In top-down processes it is a combination of the resolution of the lithographic process and precision of subsequent etching process that makes it possible.


Posted by Jerzy Ruzyllo at 05:36 PM | Semiconductors | Link is the personal blog of Jerzy Ruzyllo. With over 35 years of experience in academic research and teaching in the area of semiconductor engineering (currently holding position of a Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering and Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Penn State University), he has a unique perspective on the developments in this progress driving technical domain and enjoys blogging about it.

With over 2000 terms defined and explained, Semiconductor Glossary is the most complete reference in the field of semiconductors on the market today.

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