Ion Implantation is a way of introducing elements from the periodic table into the silicon wafer. The elements are used to create regions of modified electrical conductivity in the silicon that allows for the fabrication of devices and circuits. The wafer has usually been patterned by photolithography prior to being implanted (link to photo).
The process is similar to an atomic paint-ball gun, except that the implanter uses a beam of ions and the ions actually implant themselves into the top surface of the wafer.
The ion implanter uses expensive gases, has to be under a strong vacuum, has a 200,000 Volt power supply and is very complex. Very few universities maintain their own ion implant capability. RIT student get see and operate our implanter many times before coop or graduation. The wafer usually is thermally annealed after implantation.
Courses using Implant include: