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IEEE The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Silicon Valley Semiconductor History Panel Opening Remarks

The entire presentation will play in the following video player. To go to the links to individual segments from that evening, go to this link https://www.viodi.tv/category/history-2/ieee-2/the-early-years-of-semiconductors-in-silicon-valley/ Alan introduces the four semiconductor panelists with their impeccable credentials.  Clarification:  David Laws is the Semiconductor Curator at the Computer History Museum. He is also a very well-respected author […]

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Geri Hadley Introduction

Alan asked Geri Hadley to make a few opening remarks. Alan and Geri started working to organize this panel in the Spring of 2014. Yes, this panel session took almost 1 full year from conception to full production on April 1, 2015. It required multiple email exchanges, phone calls, and two 3+ hour planning sessions […]

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Background, Perspective & 3 Time Periods Covered from 1957-1975

Alan provides context for the session and introduces the 3 distinct time periods to be covered during the panel. 1.  1957-62 Transistor and discrete components (pre-IC period) 2.  1962-68  IC period: SSI, MSI 3.  1968-75  LSI period:  Semiconductor memories, microprocessors, consumer electronics, LED displays, etc. To start the discussion Bernie is asked to elaborate on […]

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Bernie Marren on the founding of Fairchild Semiconductor, its Managers & 1st product

Bernie explains how Fairchild Semiconductor was founded in Sept 1957 and asserts that Bob Noyce was selected as the leader from the Shockley Labs employees. Noyce wasn’t looking for that position, but accepted it. Bernie names the other Fairchild managers who all got paid the same amount of money + 1 share of stock for […]

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Ed Pausa on his early years at Fairchild (1959-1964) in Mt View, CA & Portland, ME

Ed explains how he was hired by Fairchild in 1959 because he had a materials background with a MS in Physical Metallurgy.  Ed asked a lot of questions about their production processes and controls.  He was made a foreman of Fairchild’s production plant on Charleston Ave in Mt View.  Ed later became product manager for […]

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Rheem Semiconductor

Bernie Marren discusses Rheem, an early semiconductor company acquired by Raytheon. Read more about this session at: http://sites.ieee.org/sv-techhist/?p=344 [Thanks to Tom Gardner for the above description.]

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Bernie discusses his move from AVCO in Detroit to Minneapolis & Fairchild Sales

Bernie Marren talks about his move from working with nuclear weapon fuses to selling a semiconductor product that Fairchild wouldn’t describe to him and that didn’t work.

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Early Small Scale Integrated Circuits

Alan provides background about the 1st ICs- Small Scale Integrated (SSI) circuits – and their lack of noise immunity as a potential problem. Bernie says Fairchild stimulated demand for SSIs by drastically cutting the price. David reaffirms that fact, while calling attention to unreliable plastic packages that had just come out. Ed chimes in that […]

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

Ted Hoff Discusses the Early Days of the IC Business

Ted Hoff explains why 1959 was a key year for semiconductors. The Planar Process, invented by Jean Hoerni, produced gradients that made for faster transistors (switching) and better base thickness control. David Laws adds that the planar process saved Fairchild in more ways than one as they had trouble with the earlier Mesa transistors. It […]

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The Early Years of Semiconductors in Silicon Valley

The Founder of Intersil

Double PhD & brilliant scientist Jean Hoerni was not only the inventor of the planar process at Fairchild (the basis of the integrated circuit), but also an entrepreneur. In 1964, he founded Union Carbide Electronics and in 1967 Intersil. Yet Hoerni had difficulty recruiting & retaining people at the companies he founded, because he was […]

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