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Sand to-silicon 22nm-version

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If you ever wondered how the chip that runs your life is made, here is a good graphic presentation

If you ever wondered how the chip that runs your life is made, here is a good graphic presentation

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  • 1. “Making of a Chip” Illustrations 22nm 3D/Trigate Transistors – Version January 2012 Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.1
  • 2. The illustrations on the following foils are low resolution images that visually support the explanations of the individual steps. For publishing purposes there are high resolution JPEG files posted to the Intel website: www.intel.com/pressroom/kits/chipmaking Optionally same resolution (uncompressed) images are available as well. Please request them from markus.weingartner@intel.com Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.2
  • 3. Sand / Ingot Melted Silicon – Monocrystalline Silicon Ingot – Sand scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) Silicon is the second most abundant element in the earths crust. Common In order to be used for computer chips, The ingot has a diameter of 300mm and sand has a high percentage of silicon. silicon must be purified so there is less weighs about 100 kg. Silicon – the starting material for than one alien atom per billion. It is pulled computer chips – is a semiconductor, from a melted state to form a solid which meaning that it can be readily turned is a single, continuous and unbroken into an excellent conductor or an crystal lattice in the shape of a cylinder, insulator of electricity, by the known as an ingot. introduction of minor amounts of impurities. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.3
  • 4. Ingot / Wafer Wafer – scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) The wafers are polished until they have flawless, Ingot Slicing – mirror-smooth surfaces. Intel buys manufacturing- scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) ready wafers from its suppliers. Wafer sizes have The ingot is cut into individual silicon discs increased over time, resulting in decreased costs per called wafers. Each wafer has a diameter of chip. when Intel began making chips, wafers were only 300mm and is about 1 mm thick. 50mm in diameter. Today they are 300mm, and the industry has a plan to advance to 450mm. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.4
  • 5. Fabrication of chips on a wafer consists of hundreds of precisely controlled steps which result in a series of patterned layers of various materials one on top of another. What follows is a sample of the most important steps in this complex process. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.5
  • 6. PhotolithographyApplying Photoresist – Exposure –scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) Resist Development–Photolithography is the process by which The photoresist is hardened, and portions of it are scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch)a specific pattern is imprinted on the exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light, making it soluble. The soluble photoresist is removed by awafer. It starts with the application of a The exposure is done using masks that act like chemical process, leaving a photoresistliquid known as photoresist, which is stencils, so only a specific pattern of photoresist pattern determined by what was on theevenly poured onto the wafer while it becomes soluble. The mask has an image of the mask.spins. It gets its name from the fact that pattern that needs to go on the wafer; it is opticallyit is sensitive to certain frequencies of reduced by a lens, and the exposure tool steps andlight (“photo”) and is resistant to certain repeats across the wafer to form the same image achemicals that will be used later to large number of times.remove portions of a layer of material(“resist”). Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries. 6
  • 7. Ion ImplantationIon Implantation–scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) Removing Photoresist–The wafer with patterned photoresist is Begin Transistor Formation– scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch)bombarded with a beam of ions (positively or scale: transistor level (~50-200nm)negatively charged atoms) which become After ion implantation, the photoresist is Here we zoom into a tiny part of theembedded beneath the surface in the regions not removed and the resulting wafer has a wafer, where a single transistor will becovered by photoresist. This process is called pattern of doped regions in which formed. The green region representsdoping, because impurities are introduced into transistors will be formed. doped silicon. Today’s wafers can havethe silicon. This alters the conductive properties hundreds of billions of such regionsof the silicon (making it conductive or insulating, which will house transistors.depending on the type of ion used) in selectedlocations. Here we show the creation of wells,which are regions within which transistors will beformed. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.7
  • 8. Etching Etch– scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) In order to create a fin for a tri-gate Removing Photoresist – transistor, a pattern of material called scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) a hard mask (blue) is applied using the The hard mask is chemically removed, leaving a tall, photolithography process just thin silicon fin which will contain the channel of a described. Then a chemical is applied transistor. to etch away unwanted silicon, leaving behind a fin with a layer of hard mask on top. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.8
  • 9. Temporary Gate FormationSilicon Dioxide Gate Dielectric–scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) Polysilicon Gate Electrode– Insulator–Using a photolithography step, scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) scale: transistor level (~50-200nm)portions of the transistor are coveredwith photoresist and a thin silicon Again using a photolithography step, a In another oxidation step, a silicon dioxidedioxide layer (red) is created by temporary layer of polycrystalline silicon layer is created over the entire waferinserting the wafer in an oxygen-filled (yellow) is created. This becomes a (red/transparent layer) to insulate thistube-furnace. This becomes a temporary gate electrode. transistor from other elements.temporary gate dielectric. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.9
  • 10. Intel uses a “gate last” (also known as “replacement metal gate”) technique for creating transistor metal gates. This is done in order to avoid transistor stability problems which otherwise might arise as a result of some subsequent high temperature process steps. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.10
  • 11. “Gate-Last” High-k/Metal Gate FormationRemoval of Sacrificial Gate– Applying High-k Dielectric – Metal Gate–scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) scale: transistor level (~50-200nm)Using a masking step, the temporary Individual molecular layers are applied to the A metal gate electrode (blue) is formed(sacrificial) gate electrode and gate surface of the wafer in a process called “atomic over the wafer and, using a lithographydielectric are etched away. The actual layer deposition”. The yellow layers shown step, removed from regions other thangate will now be formed; because the here represent two of these. Using a where the gate electrode is desired. Thefirst gate was removed, this procedure photolithography step, the high-k material is combination of this and the high-k materialis known as “gate last”. etched away from the undesired areas such as (thin yellow layer) gives the transistor above the transparent silicon dioxide. much better performance and reduced leakage than would be possible with a traditional silicon dioxide/polysilicon gate. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.11
  • 12. Metal Deposition Electroplating – Ready Transistor – scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) After Electroplating – scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) The wafers are put into a copper sulphate scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) This transistor is close to being finished. solution at this stage. The copper ions are On the wafer surface the copper ions Three holes have been etched into the deposited onto the transistor thru a settle as a thin layer of copper. insulation layer (red color) above the process called electroplating. The copper transistor. These three holes will be ions travel from the positive terminal filled with copper or other material (anode) to the negative terminal (cathode) which will make up the connections to which is represented by the wafer. other transistors. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.12
  • 13. Metal Layers Metal Layers – scale: transistor level (six transistors combined ~500nm) Multiple metal layers are created to interconnect (think: wires) all the transistors on Polishing – the chip in a specific configuration. How these connections have to be “wired” is scale: transistor level (~50-200nm) determined by the architecture and design teams that develop the functionality of The excess material is mechanically the respective processor (e.g. 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ i5 Processor). While polished away to reveal a specific computer chips look extremely flat, they may actually have over 30 layers to form pattern of copper. complex circuitry. A magnified view of a chip will show an intricate network of circuit lines and transistors that look like a futuristic, multi-layered highway system. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.13
  • 14. After all the interconnect layers are formed, an array of solder bumps is put on each die. These are the electrical connections with which the chip will communicate with the outside world, through the package in which it is later inserted. (these bumps are not shown in the illustrations) When wafer processing is complete, the wafers are transferred from the fab to an assembly/test facility. There, the individual die are tested while still on the wafer, then separated, and the ones that pass are packaged. Finally, a thorough test of the packaged part is conducted before the finished product is shipped. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.14
  • 15. Wafer Sort / Singulation Selecting Die for Packaging – Wafer Sort – scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) scale: die level (~10mm / ~0.5 inch) The die that responded with the right This portion of a ready wafer is being Wafer Slicing – answer to the test patterns will be put through a test. A tester steps scale: wafer level (~300mm / 12 inch) packaged. across the wafer; leads from its head The wafer is cut into pieces (called die). make contact on specific points on the The above wafer contains future Intel top of the wafer and an electrical test is processors codenamed Ivy Bridge. performed. Test patterns are fed into every single chip and the response from the chip is monitored and compared to “the right answer”. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.15
  • 16. Packaging Packaging – Individual Die – Processor – scale: package level (~20mm / ~1 inch) scale: die level (~10mm / ~0.5 inch) scale: package level (~20mm / ~1 inch) The package substrate, the die and the These are individual die which have been Completed processor (Ivy Bridge in this heat spreader are put together to form a cut out in the previous step (singulation). case). A microprocessor has been called completed processor. The green substrate The die shown here is Intel’s first 22nm the most complex manufactured product builds the electrical and mechanical microprocessor codenamed Ivy Bridge. made by man. In fact, it takes hundreds interface for the processor to interact with of steps – only the most important ones the rest of the PC system. The silver heat have been included in this picture story - spreader is a thermal interface which helps in the worlds cleanest environment (a dissipate heat. microprocessor fab). Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.16
  • 17. Class Testing / Completed Processor Class Testing – scale: package level (~20mm / ~1 inch) Binning – During this final test the processor is scale: package level (~20mm / ~1 inch) thoroughly tested for functionality, Based on the test result of class testing, performance and power. processors with equal capabilities are binned together in trays, ready for shipment to customers. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.17
  • 18. Copyright © 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.18