Few inventions have proven to be as important as the Integrated Circuit. While seemingly a simple idea — integrating individual transistors onto a single circuit — it proved difficult to implement. First conceived in 1952 by Geoffrey Drummer; then first implemented by Jack Kilby on August 28 1958, who wire bonded 3 transistors together into what today would be called a system in a package (SIP) — it wasn’t until Robert Noyce merged Jean Hoerni’s planar process with the idea that the modern Integrated Circuit was invented. Noyce (upper right) and Fairchild would go on to introduce the world’s first ICs (lower right). Noyce’s patent ushered in the information age. It also ignited a legendary California/Texas fued between Fairchild Semiconductor and TI.
IC History Dates:
1949: Werner Jacobi patents integrated amplifier at Siemens.
May 7, 1952: First conceived as a monolithic integrated circuit in 1952 by Geoffrey Drummer.
December 1, 1957: Jean Hoerni concieves of a bipolar planar technology.
August 28 1958: First implemented by Jack Kilby as a heterogeneous IC of transistors wire-bonded together.
Late 1958: Kurt Lehovec concieves of way to isolate transistors in silicon. Patent filed April 22, 1959
January 23, 1959: First planar IC with lithographically patterned metal interconnect described in Robert Noyce's notebook. This would become the basis for all modern IC technology.
March 12, 1959 First planar transistor prototype made by Hoerni, which would become the 2N1613 planar transitor announced by Fairchild Semiconductor in April 1960.
September 27, 1960: Jay Last's group successfully yields an Integrated Circuit.