NIST releases new standard for semiconductor industry

Oct 12, 2006

A wide range of optical electronic devices, from laser disk players to traffic lights, may be improved in the future thanks to a small piece of semiconductor, about the size of a button, coated with aluminum, gallium, and arsenic (AlGaAs).

The 1-centimeter square coating, just 3 micrometers thick, is the first standard for the chemical composition of thin-film semiconductor alloys issued by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

Standard Reference Material (SRM) 2841 was requested by the compound semiconductor industry to help measure and control thin film composition as a basis for optimizing material and device properties. The SRM can be used to calibrate equipment for making or analyzing these materials. Buyers are expected to include companies that grow or characterize thin films or use them to make devices, as well as government and university laboratories.

AlGaAs is used as a barrier material to increase conductivity in high-speed circuits for wireless communication; semiconductor lasers for optical disk drives, bar code scanning, xerography, and laser surgery; and light-emitting diodes for remote controls, traffic lights, and medical instruments.

The NIST standard is expected to increase the accuracy of chemical characterization of AlGaAs films by an order of magnitude over the current state of the art. Improved accuracy will reduce wasteful duplication of reference wafers, increase the free exchange of thin-film materials between vendors and their customers, and ultimately improve the accuracy of data on relationships between material composition and properties.

SRM 2841 can be ordered at ts.nist.gov/ts/htdocs/230/232/232.htm.

Source: NIST

Explore further: Research could lead to biodegradable computer chips

Related Stories

Bringing high-energy particle detection in from the cold

May 05, 2015

Radiation detectors, which monitor high-energy particles such as those produced by nuclear decay and cosmic radiation, are being used increasingly in medical imaging, petroleum well logging, astronomy and ...

Quantum Criticality in life's proteins (Update)

Apr 15, 2015

(Phys.org)—Stuart Kauffman, from the University of Calgary, and several of his colleagues have recently published a paper on the Arxiv server titled 'Quantum Criticality at the Origins of Life'. The id ...

Graphene looking promising for future spintronic devices

Apr 10, 2015

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology have discovered that large area graphene is able to preserve electron spin over an extended period, and communicate it over greater distances than had previously ...

Recommended for you

Project Jacquard to weave interactivity into textiles

6 hours ago

"Wearables" represents a broad-category of how we will interact with the digital world away from our laptop screens. It embraces arm bands, socks, bracelets, rings and watches. Google is now enhancing that ...

US judge jails Silk Road mastermind for life (Update)

9 hours ago

The American convicted of masterminding the criminal website Silk Road was sentenced in court Friday to life in prison over the online enterprise that sold $200 million in drugs to customers worldwide.

Microsoft Research project can interpret, caption photos

10 hours ago

If you're surfing the web and you come across a photo of the Mariners' Felix Hernandez on the pitchers' mound at Safeco Field, chances are you'll quickly interpret that you are looking at a picture of a baseball ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.