C. Sheldon Roberts
Class of 1948
Engineer, Semiconductor Pioneer
Sheldon Roberts was at the forefront of pioneering research that spawned the microelectronics industry.
A researcher in physical metallurgy and solid-state physics, he emerged in the 1950s as a member of the “Fairchild 8,” a group who originally worked together at Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory. Favoring silicon over germanium as a semiconductor material, they left to found Fairchild Semiconductor, the first company to manufacture integrated circuits. At Fairchild, Roberts was responsible for silicon crystal production.
Later he founded Amelco Semiconductor, now a division of Teledyne Inc., where he developed solid-state transducers and an epitaxial silicon wafer program.
Roberts has been a consultant in materials and processes for the aerospace, electronic materials, metals, and microelectronics industries.
An honorary trustee of Rensselaer, he has devoted himself to the Institute as a benefactor, volunteer, and trusted adviser.