The $400 Billion Integrated Circuit (IC) Industry

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By Ioan Sameli (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

By Ioan Sameli (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Two important aspects of integrated circuits (IC)/integrated circuit design (ICD) include Integrated Circuit Manufacturing (ICM) and Design for Manufacturing (DfM). The manufacture of integrated circuits is a huge business requiring IC executives to have as keen an understanding of the larger economic aspects of the business as engineers must have of its technical aspects. Companies such as ARM, Texas Instruments, Hitachi, and Motorola are some of the leaders in the industry.

The most important criteria by which these decision-makers are evaluated include strategies they adopt to create new product definitions, designs, layouts, and manufacturing processes. Also of major importance is whether or not return on investment (ROI) is improving.

Indeed, a $400 billion a year industry is likely to attract top talent who have experience in IC design, product development, and manufacturing. These leaders also have a thorough knowledge of IC product markets and the role of intellectual property (IP) and patents. In addition, today’s IC manufacturing requires designing systems on a chip (SOC) and the ability to work with top-tier companies as well as promising startups. Knowledge of memories, microprocessors, and multiple SOC products is also necessary.

According to How Products are Made:

“An integrated circuit, commonly referred to as an IC, is a microscopic array of electronic circuits and components that has been diffused or implanted onto the surface of a single crystal, or chip, of semiconducting material such as silicon. It is called an integrated circuit because the components, circuits, and base material are all made together, or integrated, out of a single piece of silicon, as opposed to a discrete circuit in which the components are made separately from different materials and assembled later. ICs range in complexity from simple logic modules and amplifiers to complete microcomputers containing millions of elements.”

The following video playlist from Intel has over 100 videos and covers a wide range of topics related to IC.

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