wafer definition by Webster's New World
- a thin, flat, crisp cracker or cookie
- anything resembling this, as a thin, flat disk of candy
- a piece of Eucharistic bread, specif., a thin, flat, white, typically round and unleavened piece of such bread, made from wheat
- a small adhesive disk, as of paper, dried paste, gelatin, etc., used as a seal on letters, documents, etc.
- a thin piece of a semiconductor on which integrated circuits are formed, as to create chips
Origin: Middle English wafre ; from Norman French waufre ; from Middle Dutch wafel, wafer, waffle
wafer definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- A small thin crisp cake, biscuit, or candy.
- Ecclesiastical A small thin disk of unleavened bread used in the Eucharist.
- Pharmacology A flat tablet of rice paper or dried flour paste encasing a powdered drug.
- A small disk of adhesive material used as a seal for papers.
- Electronics A small thin circular slice of a semiconducting material, such as pure silicon, on which an integrated circuit can be formed.
- To seal or fasten together with a disk of adhesive material.
- Pharmacology To prepare in the form of wafers.
- Electronics To divide into wafers.
Origin: Middle English wafre, from Anglo-Norman, variant of Old North French waufre, of Germanic origin; see webh- in Indo-European roots.
wafer - Computer Definition
(1) A small, thin continuous-loop magnetic tape cartridge that has been used from time to time for data storage and specialized applications.
(2) The base unit of chip making. It is a slice taken from a salami-like silicon crystal ingot up to 12" (300mm) in diameter. The larger the wafer, the more chips produced in a single production pass, which comprises a series of photomasking, etching and implantation steps. Wafers are approximately 1/30th of an inch thick; however, the actual layers of transistors that make up the active circuitry are only a few microns deep. Wafers started out being very small from one to three inches in diameter. Then came 100mm ingots (approximately 4"), followed by 125, 150, 200 and 300mm. Various different wafer sizes are used today, depending on the type of chip being made. See chip and wafer scale integration.