Major Highlights In the Creation and History of Semiconductors

History of Semiconductors

  • 1833: First Semiconductor Effect is Recorded by Micheal Faraday
  • 1901: Jagadis Chandra Bose detected radio waves via semiconductor crystals, and patents “Cat’s Whisker” detectors.
  • 1926: Julius Lilienfeld develops and patens a 3-electrode device, using semiconducting properties of copper sulfide.


  • 1931: Alan Wilson publishes a book entitled “The Theory of Electronic Semi-Conductors”. It explains basic semiconductor properties.
  • 1940s: Semiconductor technology advances by development of p-n junctions, high purities of germanium crystals, and silicon crystals.
  • 1947: Bell Labs invented the transistor.
  • 1952: Bell Labs allowed licensing of their transistor technology. Consumer products appear like hearing aids, and pocket radios for the public to purchase


  • 1961: Silicon transistors exceed other semiconductor materials in terms of speed.
  • 1965: “Moore’s Law” in 1965 predicts that, every two years, the power of processors will double.
  • 1970s: Transistors can be placed onto a chip that the first 8 bitmicroprocessors became available.


  • 1980s: 32-bit processors came onto the market for the first time in the 1980s. Computers gain popularity and power.


  • Early 2000s: Manufacturers were able to get over 500 million transistors onto a microprocessor, making 64-bit microprocessors a reality.