Hardware Today

CS 641 Lecture, Dr. Lawlor

IBM recently presented an interesting technology called the "through-silicon via (TSV)" for stacking silicon wafers in 3D.  This is basically a multi-layer generalization of the now standard "flip chip" or Controlled Collapse Chip Connection (C4) solder bump scheme.

UAF's own Shiva and Nilina Hullavarad published a bunch of work on the solid state physics of semiconductor fabrication: vapor deposition, UV lasers, ion irradiation, etc.  Sadly, the UAF Office of Electronic Miniaturization was closed in the summer of 2010.

You can similarly etch circuit boards with a laser printer toner mask resist.  This is my current standard way to build circuit boards for robotics and instrumentation work; other people mill away the copper.  Similar amazing technology happens inside a laser printer, going from a raster scanned laser light pattern, to an electrostatic pattern on the imaging drum, to a dusty stuck-on toner pattern on the paper, to a clean heat-fused print.  The generalization of this etching technology to build 3D structures from silicon is used in microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), such as the accelerometer in your laptop.