Silicon Substrate Fabrication Directly From Silicon Melt




The silicon industry is a multi-billion industry and constitutes the basis for a wide array of products including computers, flat panel displays, hand held devices and solar cells. All of these use silicon wafers in one form or another. Indeed, silicon has been an important material in electronic, optoelectronic, photonic and renewable energy device applications. This importance is due to its excellent characteristics such as low bandgap, large charge storage capability, design flexibility, controllable dopant profile, and ecologically safe. There have been considerable efforts devoted to developing a cheap silicon wafer that will last for long periods of time; however, these methods have drawbacks that limit their usefulness in industry. Researchers at the University of Nevada Reno have overcome these problems by developing a method to create silicon substrates from a melt.



Our invention is a system and a method that starts with the use of raw Si material and processes it into ultrathin wafers. Customers such as semiconductor companies will use these thin wafers and implement in them functional devices and elements to produce the final product, e.g., microprocessor, transistors, diodes, solar cells, etc. The ultrathin nature of these wafers will allow significant cost savings during the manufacturing process of electronic components and other systems that use silicon as a base substrate. We estimate that Industry will save millions of dollars in product manufacturing.



•       Our invention offers a route to significant savings in materials and time, which translates into a drastic decrease in cost of solar panels and in turn power generation.

•       Our invention uses unique method to make ultrathin silicon substrate.

•       Producing Si at the thickness range of 30 microns allow not only for lowering the cost of traditional semiconducting (based on Si) devices, but also open up new venues in flexible electronics and photonics.


IP Status




Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Shannon Sheehan
Manager, Technology Commercialization
University of Nevada, Reno
Ghassan Jabbour
Dhanesh Chandra
Hyung Woo Choi
Mo Masoumi Danyan