Robert N. Noyce
Born Dec 12 1927
- Died Jun 3 1990
Semiconductor Device-and-Lead Structure
Patent Number(s) 2,981,877
Robert N. Noyce, cofounder of Intel Corporation, was one of the pioneers of semiconductor development.
Integrated circuits are used in almost all electrical equipment in use today, and they have revolutionized the world of electronics. The invention was a major improvement over the manual assembly of electric circuits, and mass production made electronic devices cheaper and more common.
Now the integrated circuit is broken into many more categories based on what the chip does. For example, the microprocessor is an integrated circuit that processes all the information in a computer. The evolution of the integrated circuit has continued in respect to the size; the most advanced circuits contain several hundreds of millions of circuit components on an area no larger than a fingernail.
Born in Iowa, he received a B.A. from Grinnell College (Iowa) in 1949 and a Ph.D. in physical electronics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1953. He did research at Philco Corporation until 1956, when he joined Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory in Palo Alto, California, to work on transistor technology.
As research director of Fairchild Semiconductor, he was responsible for initial development of the firm's silicon mesa and planar transistor product lines. In 1957 Noyce cofounded the Fairchild Semiconductor Corporation in Mountain View, California. He was research director until early 1959 when he became vice president and general manager.
In July 1968 he cofounded Intel Corp. with Gordon E. Moore, who had also been a cofounder of Fairchild Semiconductor and a member of the Shockley laboratory staff. Noyce served as president of Intel until 1975 and chairman of the board from 1975 to 1979.
Noyce held 16 patents for semiconductor devices, methods, and structures.