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Bron: Coolinfo

Op Coolinfo vond ik een stuk dat gaat over het gebruik van rubber in microchips. Best wel interressante stuff lijkt me:

Bell Labs has developed a high-tech rubber stamp that could be used to print features as fine as microchip circuits without some of the constraints of traditional chipmaking technology. The technique has its roots in traditional chip manufacturing methods, but enables people to put circuitry on unconventional materials such as glass or plastic, said John Rogers, a physical chemist at Bell Labs, the research arm of Lucent.

Possible uses of the new technology could be large flexible screens that could be unrolled and attached to a wall, or fiber optic cables that could be tuned to transmit just the right frequency of light, Rogers said. The technique begins the same way as traditional chipmaking, where ultraviolet light is used to etch tiny patterns on silicon wafers. Next, a liquid silicone is poured across the silicon surface and solidified by baking it at a low temperature. The rubber then can be peeled off, coated with special ink, and used to stamp the pattern on other surfaces.

While the technique could be used to create ordinary chips, it's not realistic, at least in the short term, that the research technique could displace conventional silicon chip manufacturing methods, Rogers said. The stamp itself, as well as the mold used to create it, can be used over and over, Rogers said. Using Bell Labs' chipmaking equipment, features the size of 0.02 microns can be etched and reproduced accurately in the rubber stamp. However, because the ink used spreads some when the rubber stamp is used, the ultimate feature size is restricted to about 0.2 microns, Rogers said. In contrast, future editions of Intel's Pentium III chip due in August will have a feature size of 0.18 microns.

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