Silicon wafers are thin slices of semiconductor and is used for fabricating integrated circuits to manufacture solar cells. These thin silicon wafers, which appear to be getting smaller and smaller as the years go by, are often in need of polishing. While the market for consumer electronics does have a high demand of silicon wafers, this makes the process to manufacture and polishing them more difficult. Manufacturing wafers have their own subset of challenges for the growing demand, but this polishing process is a little more delicate and must be done correctly.
Minor Damage; While looking at a silicon wafer with the naked eye may not reveal any type of damage, there can often be small bits of damage and smudges that can present problems to the efficacy of the silicon wafer if not addressed properly. This is why silicon wafer polishing is so important, as surface damage is often in need of removal in order to function properly. The process of polishing a silicon wafer completely takes away any physical ailments present in the wafer.
Ingredients for Polishing; The process of polishing a silicon wafer requires very delicate ingredients, such as a liquid slurry that is made out of diamonds as well as delicate polishing pads. There is often a vacuum that hold the wafer in place while the wafer is being polished. While one side of the wafer is being held by the vacuum on one end, the individual polishing the wafer is able to gently apply the pad and liquid slurry to the other side and begin the polishing process. The same thing is repeated on the other side.
It is very important to keep silicon wafers polished and tidy in order to be as efficient as possible. If you leave them unpolished, this may open up a door to irrevocable damage in the future.