Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > News > Designing tomorrow's computer - a race to the bottom

May 24th, 2007

Designing tomorrow's computer - a race to the bottom

The semiconductor industry is on its way to 32 nm processor technology, expected to be commercialized around 2009, and the day might be near when transistors will reach the limits of miniaturization at atomic levels and put an end to the currently used fabrication technologies. Apart from the issues of interconnect density and heat dissipation, which some researchers hope to address with carbon nanotube-based applications, there is the fundamental issue of quantum mechanics that will kick in once chip design gets down to around 4 nm. This is where semiconductor dimensions have become so small that quantum effects would dominate the circuit behavior. Computer designers usually regard this as a bad thing because it might allow electrons to leak to places where they are not wanted. In particular, the tunneling of electrons and holes - so-called quantum tunneling - will become too great for the transistor to perform reliable operations. The result would be that the two states of the switch could become indistinguishable. Quantum effects can, however, also be beneficial. A group of researchers has now shown that a single bit of data might be stored on, and again retrieved from, a single atom. Just don't expect this in your computer anytime soon, though.


Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

Chip Technology

Unusual quantum liquid on crystal surface could inspire future electronics October 22nd, 2016

Scientists find technique to improve carbon superlattices for quantum electronic devices: In a paradigm shift from conventional electronic devices, exploiting the quantum properties of superlattices holds the promise of developing new technologies October 20th, 2016

Exploring defects in nanoscale devices for possible quantum computing applications October 19th, 2016

Leti Scientists Participating in Sessions on Med Tech, Automotive Technologies, MEMS, Si-photonics and Lithography at SEMICON Europa: Teams also Will Demonstrate Technology Advances in Telecom, Data Fusion, Energy, Silicon Photonics and 3D Integration October 18th, 2016

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers

Unusual quantum liquid on crystal surface could inspire future electronics October 22nd, 2016

Physicists use lasers to capture first snapshots of rapid chemical bonds breaking October 21st, 2016

Nanoparticle vaccinates mice against dengue fever October 21st, 2016

New perovskite solar cell design could outperform existing commercial technologies: Stanford, Oxford team creates high-efficiency tandem cells October 21st, 2016

The latest news from around the world, FREE

  Premium Products
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More

Nanotechnology Now Featured Books


The Hunger Project