Synthetic sapphire created in laboratories is a very hard material of aluminum oxide in a hexagonal crystalline form. Sapphire is the third hardest mineral after the diamond and the moissanite. It is durable and has high temperatures and a high heat resistance in most process environments and applications found in semiconductor wafer manufacturing.
Polished sapphire wafers and substrates are used for applications including infrared detectors, hybrid microelectronics, radiation resistance, and polishing characters. LED arrays are also produced on sapphire substrates, and they save megawatts of lighting power.
Very thin electronic wafers are also used as the insulating substrates of solid-state electronics, especially integrated circuits due to their excellent electrical insulating properties. Sapphire has high thermal conductivity, and CMOS chips on sapphire are useful for high-power radio-frequency applications such as satellite communication systems, public safety band radios, and cellular telephones.
Sapphire blank applications include substrates, wafers, covers, flats, windows, and spacers. The size of sapphire able to be polished is limited only by the material’s availability. Sapphire wafer services include sapphire cnc machining, dicing, wafer thinning, backgrinding, hole drilling, angle and edge polishing, and other industrial purposes.
Polishing Corporation of America (PCA), in their modern semiconductor industry facility in the heart of Silicon Valley in Santa Clara, California, has been manufacturing high-grade sapphire wafers for close to half a century. It is one of the leading suppliers for customers around the world and has developed a polishing substrates process that is approximately nine times as easy as previous processes. Their technicians also created the first wax-free method of silicon wafer polishing that obtains ultra flatness at a very low cost.
PCA offers silicon wafers of any diameter (including new ultra-flat 400mm diameter wafers) that are produced to precise SEMI standards or to custom specifications for individual semiconductor designs.