BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY

BYU engineering students put ‘world’s smallest Book of Mormon’ on 4 inch disc

Sep 29, 2022, 3:15 PM
The wafer with the etched Book of Mormon on it, made by BYU students...
Professor Aaron Hawkins and his students showcase their Scripture on a Wafer that they have created that contains the entire text of the Old Testament, New Testament, and Book of Mormon. August 9, 2022. (Nate Edwards/BYU)
(Nate Edwards/BYU)

PROVO, Utah — Engineering students from BYU have etched a disk, 4 inches in diameter, with the entirety of the Book of Mormon. Two students and their professor created the etching, along with one each for the Old and New Testaments.

Carson Zeller, an electrical engineering student at BYU, said the project came about from an old idea with a previous research student.

Dr. Aaron Hawkins, electrical and computer engineering professor and faculty mentor at BYU, gave the project to Zeller and another student, Ethan Belliston.

The process of etching the Book of Mormon text took didn’t take long, Zeller said. The process only takes a half hour to an hour max.

But the project took about a month to do because the students needed to find a text file of the Book of Mormon in order to get the etching done.

After finding the text file, Zeller and Belliston got to work.

“And then it took a little bit of time to get the actual, what we call a photo mask, which has the entire pattern that we use,” Zeller said.

In order to get the text onto the disc — which is called a wafer in electronics — the students followed the process usually used in commercial computer chip manufacturing.

According to a BYU press release, the wafer contains all 291,652 words of the Book of Mormon. The disc is plated in gold, will last millions of years and is readable with a microscope.

All three wafers are on display in the Clyde Building on the BYU campus in Provo.

Related: Researchers using dirty diapers to develop new autism test

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BYU engineering students put ‘world’s smallest Book of Mormon’ on 4 inch disc