Steps Needed To Make A Chip

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Are you aware of the fact that how many steps are needed to make a chip? Probably, It only takes around 3 steps such as designing the chip, manufacturing the chip, and lastly sealing and testing the chip. However, is it actually that easy and simple to make chips? Definitely not. A lot of people would be able to secure a house at their desired location but they may not be able to support a chip starting from design and ending at mass production. 

Moreover, this is just for those chips that utilize mature technology. However, for chips having advanced technology like Ultratech Saturn, the cost of capital is way higher. Here in this guide, we have explored the steps that can help you make a chip from the beginning.

Chip Design

The design creation of a chip is the primary and most significant step in manufacturing a chip. We can also refer to the design of a chip which is the basis for a good chip creation. You might observe that even in the downstream manufacturing, packaging, or testing capabilities are invincible. Hence, no design drawing is useless. Being one of the world’s smallest and most ambitious projects, the process of chip design is by no means as basic and simple as drawing pictures on a computer. Instead, the process of chip designing can be divided into four steps including specification definition, system-level design, front-end design, and back-end design.

1. Specification Definition

Specification definition refers to the initiation of chip design, engineers perform a good job of assessing the chip requirements, identifying the level of cost control, objectives, and performance of the chip, as well as completing the definition of product specifications to determine the overall direction of the design. 

2. System level design

Since the chip design requires comprehensively taking into account the system interaction, function, performance, security, cost, power consumption, maintainability and measurability of the chip, etc. Every engineer needs to formulate design solutions based on the previously divided modules. 

3. Front-end design

The front-end design is referred to as the logic design. It can be called the e soul of the entire chip design stage. It truly realizes the process of developing the chip from scratch. The front-end design is the solution identified by the engineer as per the system design, carrying out specific circuit design for each module. Simply put, it is to describe and realize the module function with code.

4. Backend Design

The back-end design is associated with the realization of the front-end design. Specifically, it is the physical netlist transformed from the logic synthesis and then transformed into a graphic file that the manufacturing factory can use.

5. Chip Manufacturing

Chip manufacturing is an essential step in turning a chip from a design phase into a real thing. For the chip developer, the tape-out is too important as a tape-out failure often means millions or even beyond losses and a massive missed market opportunity. You can utilize Flat washers to ensure the proper functioning of equipment and machinery involved in chip manufacturing.

In a broad sense, in chip manufacturing wafer production is another important thing that includes two major steps: ingot manufacturing and wafer manufacturing, plus the wafer needle testing process. The steps in chip manufacturing include purification, ingot manufacturing, slicing, grinding and polishing, oxidation, photolithography and etching, Ion implantation and annealing, etc.