We’re in the middle of a chip war, competing on production and policy with countries like China. But why have these tiny, tiny machines created such a global geopolitical footprint?
The simple answer: as we’ve become more and more reliant on microchips they’ve simultaneously gotten harder to manufacture — creating rising demand for semiconductors for civilian as well as military uses.
So what are microchips, and why are they so difficult to make?
Scripps News' producer Eli Kintisch goes to the National Institute of Standards and Technology for a better understanding of how these tiny yet important pieces of technology are made.