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By visan_007 ·
what subjects must a student concentrate to pursue a career in chip design industry

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by TheChas In reply to chip's

By chip, I assume that you are referring to Integrated Circuit design.

There are 2 primary parts to IC design.
Function:
Physical:

For functional IC design, you need a LOT of high end math, and a solid background in both analog and digital circuit design.
CAD and CAE courses will be helpful.
You will want to get a Masters in Electronics Engineering or even a PHD in electronics for the best IC design jobs.

For the physical design side, you need a solid CAD background. If you can visualize drawn objects in 3-D, you will be in a better position for IC CAD work. ICs and circuit boards are made up of layers of material with interconnections across and between layers.

Are you good at mazes? An IC is very similar to a complex maze.

Chas

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by TheChas In reply to chip's

A few more thoughts:

Boolean Algebra (algebra with binary numbers)

Physics: As IC topologies approach the quantum level, the next major step in IC evolution may involve quantum physics.

Chas

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by carollong In reply to chip's

The minimum entry of IC design seems to be a 3 year degree (after 18 years / high school), normally in electronic engineering. The majority "blocks" on chips are now digital but there will continue to be a need for analog IC design experts.

However, there are some software roles available in IC development (many advanced features are software driven) but most computing courses wont help you - they look at applications software - you need a software cource that looks at embedded systems and all the restrictions that places on coding.

Lots of IC designers now use tools to do the drawing and checking for them. A list of topics to look at and organisations to investigate can be found at http://www.vhdl.org

One of the bigger CAD tool suppliers in this field also supplies designers to manufactures has a website to give you a flavour of the industry too http://www.cadence.com

Then there are the major IC designers/manufacturers like Philips http://www.semiconductors.com and Intelhttp://www.intel.com and lots of others. Check out these sites for more information on what they expect when they recruit.

Another area to look at is the materials science research. Designing manufactureing processes using advanced materials to allow more to be squeezed on to a chip will continue to be a growth area (semiconductor are subject to Moore's Law). Most fabs (manufacturing plants) are based in the "Far East" but there are others. The research side may be based in a university andyou'll need the accademic qualifications for that. The manufacting process side is normally in industry and might not need a PhD if you are an "expert".

Find ou what really interests you about chip design and follow that.

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by vegatecgroup In reply to chip's

That depends on what your interests are. chemistry/chemical engineering if you want to make products that are used in the chips, physics if you are a good theorist, electrical/electronics engineering if you are a good researcher/developer. Advanced degrees in any of the subjects would be a big help in your career. I have an MT in Electronics Engineering. I currently develope systems for several large manufacturing companies in the industrial electronics business. Much of my current work is focused on the Foveon X3 CMOS Sensor(www.foveon.com) for military applications.

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