Karol Bagh | IAS GS Foundation Course | 29 May, 6 PM Call Us
This just in:

State PCS

Daily Updates

Science & Technology

Semiconductor Chip Manufacturing Technology

  • 09 Apr 2024
  • 5 min read

For Prelims: Semiconductors, Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), Critical Information Infrastructures, Industry 4.0, Production-Linked Incentive (PLI)

For Mains: Significance of semiconducting devices in Indian economy, Need for promoting electronics and semiconductor industry, Role of electronics industry in making India self-reliant

Source: TH

Why in News?

Recently, the TATA Group collaborated with Taiwan's PSMC to establish a 300 mm (millimetre) wafer fabrication plant in Gujarat, with plans to launch its initial 28 nm (nanometer) chip in 2026.

  • The Indian Government has also recently sanctioned two assembly and test plants in Gujarat and Assam.

What is a Semiconductor Chip?

  • About:
    • Semiconductor: Semiconductors possess electrical conductivity properties intermediate between conductors and insulators, which can be modified by introducing dopants.
    • Semiconductor chips, transistors, fabrication technology, and wafers are interdependent components essential for electronic device functionality.
      • Transistors serving as the building blocks of semiconductor chips fabricated on wafers using specific technologies, enabling the creation of complex devices powering modern technology.
    • Semiconductor Chips:
      • It is a tiny electronic device made of semiconductor material (usually silicon or germanium) which serves as the basic building block of most electronic circuits.
      • These chips can contain billions of microscopic switches on a chip smaller than a fingernail.
      • The basic component of a semiconductor chip is a silicon wafer etched with tiny transistors that control the flow of electricity according to various computational instructions.
      • It performs various functions, such as processing data, storing information, or controlling electronic devices.
      • They are a critical part of almost every modern electronic device, including smartphones, computers, and integrated circuits.
    • Transistor:
      • Transistors are fundamental components of semiconductor devices that amplify or switch electronic signals and electrical power.
      • They are the building blocks of modern electronic devices and are used in various applications, including amplifiers, switches, and digital circuits.
    • Fabrication Technology:
      • Fabrication technology refers to the process of creating semiconductor devices like chips and transistors. It involves several key steps, including wafer preparation, photolithography, etching, doping, and packaging.
    • Wafer:
      • A wafer (also called a slice or substrate) is a thin slice of semiconductor material, such as crystalline silicon, used for the fabrication of integrated circuits.
      • A semiconductor chip is produced by printing an array of chips on a circular semiconductor wafer, similar to how postage stamps are printed on a sheet and then cut out individually.
      • Larger wafer sizes in the industry enable more chips to be printed on a single wafer, accelerating and reducing the cost of chip production, despite the technical challenges and initial capital expenses involved.

What is the Status of India’s Semiconductor Ecosystem?

  • India is actively pursuing the development of a robust semiconductor ecosystem. With its large market potential, talent pool, and government support. India aims to reduce dependence on imports and establish domestic manufacturing capabilities.
  • India's established chip design industry since the 1990s will aid its semiconductor manufacturing efforts, offering opportunities for various professionals beyond electronics and computer engineers.
  • Key Advantages:
    • Market Potential: India’s rapidly growing population and burgeoning middle class create a strong demand for semiconductor products.
      • India’s semiconductor market is projected to reach $55 billion by 2026, reflecting its focus on domestic manufacturing.
    • Talent Pool: India emphasises skill development and innovation, encouraging domestic chip design skills.

Drishti Mains Question:

Q. Explore the obstacles, policy suggestions, and potential changes needed to enhance growth in India's semiconductor sector.

UPSC Civil Services Examination, Previous Year Question (PYQ)


Q. Which one of the following laser types is used in a laser printer? (2008)

(a) Dye laser 
(b) Gas laser
(c) Semiconductor laser 
(d) Excimer laser

Ans: (c)

SMS Alerts
Share Page