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date: 28 March 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article explores the changing interactions between fundamental physics and the learning and skills situated near engineering and enterprise as related to microelectronics and in particular to semiconductors that occurred over the span of the twentieth century. The discussion draws on selected episodes in the silicon tide with reference to an understanding of semiconducting to the invention of transistors and their development. The focus is on theories, experiments, models, invention, materials, products, manufacturing markets, and management from Guglielmo Marconi’s introduction of Hertzian communication to the 1947 invention of the transistor by John Bardeen, William Shockley, and Walter Brattain, the development of the microprocessor in 1970, and the launch in 2011 of the nanoscale Finfet transistor family by the Intel company.

Keywords: physics, microelectronics, semiconductors, silicon tide, transistors, Guglielmo Marconi, Hertzian communication, John Bardeen, William Shockley, microprocessor

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