This guide introduces you to the best resources for understanding the science, technology, and business of semiconductors.
Most of the sources in this list are fairly well-defined individual reference works. Knovel, in contrast, is a major source of technical reference works cutting across disciplines. If you don't see the source you need elsewhere in this list, check out Knovel.
A major aggregator of technical reference information, Knovel offers ebooks across 25 topics, including Electronics and Semiconductors, Nanotechnology, Metals and Metallurgy. It includes works from many of the leading publishers in the field, including Springer, Wiley, Elsevier, and others.
- Wiley Encyclopedia of Electrical and Electronics Engineering
This comprehensive encyclopedia covering many specialties is an excellent starting place for research in the field. It in fact won the "Best Reference Book" award from the American Society for Engineering Education when it came out in 1999. It includes graphs and tables to accompany the articles.
- ASM Handbooks Online
Key information on materials selection, design, and manufacturing, with information on chemical composition, physical and mechanical properties, typical manufacturing processes, and applications. Widely considered the leading reference work on materials.
- Springer Materials--The Landoldt-Bornstein Database
Major source for physical and chemical data in materials science. Covers electronic structure and stransport, semiconductvity, advanced materials, thermodynamics, and much more.
- CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics
Critical data on properties of organic and inorganic compounds, and generally regarded as the leading source in that area. Includes interactive tables to sort data by various parameters, and enables you to search 10,000 compounds by sketching the chemical structure.
- Encyclopedia of Chemical Physics and Physical Chemistry
A three-volume encyclopedia covering these two closely related areas, leaning a bit towards the chemistry side. The three chapters cover Fundamentals, Methods, and Applications. Each chapter has particularly helpful references for further reading.
These collections are some of the most important sources of research on semiconductors and closely related fields. With the exception of INSPEC, they all offer full text, though of course library subscriptions vary.
If your focus is on the electrical engineering side of things and you want to start with a single source, IEEE is your best bet. If your focus is more on the materials side, SpringerLink and MRS are both excellent choices. MRS is probably the best single starting place, as it is relatively small and narrowly focused, so you will be able to tell relatively quickly if they have what you need.
- IEEE Xplore
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers is the world's largest technical publisher, offering hundreds of journals, thousands of conferences, hundreds of books, and some of the most important standards in the industry. According to the Thomson Reuters Journal Citation Report, IEEE publishes 16 of the top 20 journals in electrical engineering and 8 of the top 10 in telecommunications, and has many other key coverage areas as well.
Comprehensive bibliographic and citation database covering physics, electrical engineering, communications, computer science, and control engineering. Includes powerful search, browse, and analysis tools and enables you to set alerts. Does not include full text, though your library may offer links to full text from other vendors. Overall, INSPEC is an excellent choice for power searchers looking for technical articles across many collections.
Springer is one of the leading publishers across science, technology and medicine. SpringerLink contains hundreds of journals and thousands of books related to semiconductors, covering circuits and systems, nanotechnology, materials science, signal processing, and more.
- Materials Research Society
The Materials Research Society offers the MRS Bulletin, a monthly analysis of a specific current topic; the Journal of Materials Research, a leading academic journal in the field; and MRS Proceedings, collections of information presented at MRS meetings.
- SPIE Digital Library
The SPIE is a leading publisher in optics and photonics, offering key journals, conferences, and books in the field. Important resource for semiconductor manufacturing, image processing, communications, and more.
- World Semiconductor Trade Statistics
Collects data on trade net shipments and forecasts. Offers monthly, quarterly and annual reports, including the Monthly Semiconductor Sales report, the Semiconductor Sales Regional Report, WSTS Forecast and the Semiconductor End-Use Report.
- Microprocessor Report
Published by the Linley Group, Microprocessor Report is a leading technical publication for the microprocessor industry covering emerging platforms, personal computer technologies, memory and system logic chips, mobile computing devices, embedded processors, DSP technology, and intellectual property issues. If you only read one source on microprocessors and want to get a sense for both the business and technical sides of the field, this is the place to go.
- Semico research
Research company providing semiconductor product forecasts based on consumption in end-use markets. Publishes research on semiconductor product type, end use markets, and manufacturing.
- Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI)
The industry trade organization for manufacturing equipment and materials suppliers. Publishes market data and analysis.
- International Data Corporation (IDC)
Market sizing and quantitative research on semiconductors, computer systems and peripherals, internet, networking and telecommunications, software and services.
SemiWiki is an important industry website. It has a fairly active forum in which industry employees share information and answer questions, and also features blogs from respected industry figures. The blog is one of the best sourcesfor in-depth coverage of recent news stories.
This is a great 10-minute video from the Science Channel show How do they do it? on how semiconductors go from sand to computer chips.