It is not cheap to train people in the production of wafers used in many electronic devices. In addition to the materials, you need chemicals, heavy machinery and a clean lab environment.
The research team of Xinhao Xu, an assistant professor in the School of Information Science and Learning Technologies, working with Fang Wang, associate teaching professor in engineering, were able to solve the training problem. They developed an exact replica of a clean lab using immersive virtual reality (VR) technologies. Students could practice every aspect of wafer production, including drawing intricate circuits and light scribing.
The system development follows instructional design principles to provide tutorials, pop quizzes and scaffoldings. The ultimate outcome is that participants pass a qualifications exam in a real clean room.
“The students could do the immersive VR training from anywhere at any time until they feel confident, and a scoring system lets them know if they are on the right track,” Xu says.