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Engineering Love is Shared by Intel and NASA

Intel and NASA should be commended for their ongoing efforts to educate the public about difficult scientific and technology issues. Intel’s sneak peek into an Oregon chip fab to describe intense ultraviolet lithography is one of the most recent additions to this repertoire (EUV). Chip circuit patterns can be projected onto a silicon wafer at 13.5 nanometers, which is more than 10 times smaller than existing lithography equipment.

The EUV system was delivered to the fab using three Boeing 747 cargo flights, 40 freight containers, and 20 trucks. It is made up of 100,000 components, weighs 200 tonnes, and is the size of a school bus. The machine is manufactured by ASML in the Netherlands, which is now working on a next-generation version for which Intel has placed an order and is first in line to receive. A 4-minute Intel-produced video explains how the EUV works as well as some lithography principles.

Engineering Love is Shared by Intel and NASASeparately, NASA has been publishing a regular stream of films and blogs about the planned Artemis Moon and Mars expedition (among many others) for years, and has just been posting updates on the 17-year-in-the-making James Webb Space Telescope mission. Webb is scheduled to take flight around 7:20 a.m. EST on Friday. A video explanation of the element Beryllium, which was used to construct the telescope mirror, was one of the coolest video presentations for the Webb project.

The metal is extremely light (less than aluminium), six times stiffer than steel, and capable of maintaining its shape and volume in extreme temperatures. Thomas Zurbuchen, the assistant administrator of NASA science mission directorate, has made numerous posts promoting Webb and other NASA programmes, and appears to enjoy his role as an astrophysics evangelist, which NASA has filled in the past.

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