How Are Processors Made?

How are processors made? Have you ever thought about that? If you have then we are both on the same page. I will take you through the steps processors go through to achieve what we call processors today.

I wrote earlier about how motherboards are made. It is equally fair to tell you how the motherboard’s driving power, CPU, is also made.

CPUs are very clever engineering that has been passed down and improved upon over many decades. It might seem very complex if you try to think or understand how CPUs are made. Actually, it is not something you can not understand.

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We will take a quick look at how a CPU is made but let us take a quick look at what a CPU is.

What is a CPU?

The Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the brain of every device. If the device can execute commands or perform complex tasks like calculations, there is obviously a CPU in play there.

Apart from completing complex tasks, the Central Processor also helps control all the other parts of the device. This makes people refer to it as the brain of the computer.

Earlier processors came with just a single processing chamber or what is also known as a CPU Core. Processors have improved and now a single processor can have as many as 16 CPU cores.

Since we know a little about what processors are, we can now look at how they are made.

How are processors made?

The CPU in this era of advanced technology is on a more micro level compared to earlier ones.

CPU is made from silicone. Silicone is the base product of the CPU and motherboard as a whole. The silicone goes through a process called ”Photolithography”.

Because the circuits in the CPU need to be on the micro level, the photolithography method is employed for accurate precision. Even if the precision is about thirty-thousandths of an inch off, it could be really bad for the manufacturing process.

Photolithography

The photolithography method uses a light and imagery system to etch the silicon circuits to the desired size with accurate precision.

An image is projected onto the silicon wafer surface where the etching is to be done. The silicon wafer surface is then coated with what is called “photoresist”. This photoresist is coated according to the projected image leaving the wafer parts that are not to be etched away.

The photoresist reacts with light and when washed away leaves a precise etched surface of the silicon wafer. Copper is filled into the etched areas forming a transistor. The process is then repeated to form multiple layers of well-designed transistors. The cores of the processor also come into existence during this entire process.

After the process, the silicon chip which will now have many transistor terminals will be mounted to a PCB. This PCB has over a thousand pins on one side with matching terminals to that of the silicon chip on the other side.

The pins on the other side are connected to the terminals on the other side of the PCB electronically. When the silicon chip is mounted, each terminal is connected to each pin on the other side of the PCB. A heat-conducting plate is placed on top of the silicon chip. Usually, the manufacturer’s logo is engraved on this heat-conducting play.

Testing and packaging

After all the processes, the silicon wafer is now a full processor. It is then tested in real life working environment to ensure it is working properly.

If everything is fully working without any fault, then the processor will be packed and ready to ship. Processors that do not work properly will be shipped for a cheaper price.

For instance, if some cores are failing due to problems with the silicon transistors, the problem will reduce the number of cores so the CPU will have to ship for a lower price. Non-working CPUs will have to be discarded.

How processors are made – FAQs

If you have any questions regarding how processors are made that have not been answered here yet, simply leave the questions in the comment section and I will reply as early as possible.

Can you make your own processor?

Definitely No! You can not create your own processor because processors are very expensive to make. The factories or labs where these processors are made cost billions of dollars to run.

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