SE Radio

SE Radio 174: Chip Manufacturing and Waferscanners

Guest: Wilbert Albers
Host: Markus

In this episode we take a look at microchip production, with a special focus on waferscanners. To do this, we talked with Wilbert Albers of ASML, the leading waferscanner manufacturer in the world. In the episode, we talk about the overall chip production process (from silicon sand over wafer cutting to lithography and etching), and then we talk about the challenges of building high-precision, high-throughput waferscanners.

Show Notes


Join the discussion
  • First things first: For me, it’s an interesting podcast.
    However, it has nothing at all to do with software engineering, which is the topic I’d expect to hear in this podcast series.
    If you had talked about the architecture of such a software system at least a little, I’d be happy to forgive.
    In the future, if you want to advertise your other podcast, go ahead. I dutifully endure even Leo Laporte on Security Now.
    If ASML wants to advertise their job openings this badly (and I know from my own sources they at least make that impression), let them buy advertising time, and separate-out the advertising section so we know it’s not part of the podcast.
    Other than that, please keep it on topic, at least somewhat.
    Omega-tau seems to be the right place for this podcast. And instead of serving it here _because_ so few people are subscribing both, you might consider having different audiences in both endeavors, a reason _not_ to serve the same podcasts in both streams.

    Sorry for being so blunt, but this had to come out.
    Other than that, I’m more than happy with SE Radio. And for me: Better to decrease the frequency even further a little, than to change the scope.

    Keep up the good work to all of you, and thanks a lot!


  • Johan,

    thanks for your feedback. We really weren’t sure whether we should publish this one on SE Radio.
    We thought that it might be interesting for the audience. Seems you disagree. We’ll take this as a
    data point for future decisions like this.


  • I really liked this episode, especially because of Wilbert Albers’ witty and clear answers. I think the subject wasn’t more off-topic than having an article about jet-engine manufacturing in a magazine intended for aircraft pilots. I would love to see more episodes with low-level and hardware topics!

  • Really enjoyed the podcast, made a nice change to pure software and I think it’s useful to have at least a rough understanding of other areas of the industry. You made it very clear right at the start that it wasn’t a software topic, so anyone that was not going to be interested had ample warning to switch off and tune in next time. Good job, and I’d be happy to occasionally hear other non-software topics.

  • I might be biased here since I act as a volunteer “spam-hunter” for SE radio, but in my opinion this was a good episode and is a topic about which people in the industry should know, at least on some level, to write programs which perform.

  • I thought this episode was great. It was very nice to get some perspectives on the hardware that we all program against. I’ll definitely be checking out this Omega-tau podcast you mentioned.

  • Another excellent podcast on a very interesting topic. Thank you for taking the time and effort to share this with us.

  • Johan, don’t be that guy. If you don’t want to listen to this episode, don’t listen. More like this! I want to see where the hardware and software meets.

  • Just discovered your show last week, which is great, all around. Keep it up. I loved the chip episode, which I will share with SE colleagues eager to learn the semiconductor mfg lingo and challenges.

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