How Many Chips Does a Wafer Create?


March 1, 2022

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Silicon wafers are an essential part of today’s technology, since they provide the chips that are used in cellphones, tablets, computers, and more. This means that every part of the wafer manufacturing process needs to be optimized to keep tech costs as low as possible.

Today, we’ll discuss the factors that determine how many chips a single silicon wafer is able to create. We’ll also discuss why this is important.

hand holding a single chip for a Silicon Wafer

What Determines the Number of Chips?

There are several factors influencing how many chips a single wafer can be cut from:

  • Wafer SizeWafers can range widely in size, from 25.4 mm to 450 mm. Researchers are constantly looking for new ways to increase this size, in order to increase the number of chips that can be cut form a wafer.
  • Chip Size – Smaller chips take up less space on a wafer. Moore’s Law has long meant that we could create ever-smaller chips while not losing power, though it’s important to note that at a certain size, the manufacturing process becomes so complicated as to be less cost-effective.
  • Quality ControlQuality control is an essential part of wafer production, since the technology can be delicate. Even damage invisible to the human eye can impact its function. Precautions like clean rooms are essential for maximizing how many chips a wafer creates.

Why It Matters

The number of high-quality chips that a single wafer produces has a massive impact on the final price of a chip. This is more important on the production side than the consumer side, but it’s still useful to understand one of the biggest factors determining wafer pricing.

worker holding a Silicon Wafer with white gloves

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