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Are Chips Colorful?


Quilt – 2003

The simple answer: yes and no. Silicon and aluminum, as fate would have it, are both gray. Not a very inspiring color scheme it would seem. Ah! But it is, and it’s due to the reflective properties of the chip’s surface. A chip is made of many layers that crisscross it’s surface, light is reflected and refracted producing many colors. The colors that are generated depend on the chip design, the technology, the microscope lens, the magnification, the lighting, the viewing angle, and on and on. Most chips have a dominant color that they reflect. Often it is white, but sometimes it is a red, blue, green, or yellow. Also, some chips have layers that are different colors. I have seen just about every color in chips, but every chip is as unique as a diamond, both exhibiting the fire from which they were born.