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Home > News > Understanding high-k dielectrics easier, thanks to new model

October 17th, 2007

Understanding high-k dielectrics easier, thanks to new model

Abstract:
Research being carried out at the London Centre for Nanotechnology has revealed a theoretical model which may provide a better understanding of the dielectric layer. The new model predicts flaws and defects in a visual way which might help researchers hone in on just the right materials for future semiconductors. These could significantly decrease wasted power and heat.


The dielectric layer is a very thin layer of insulating material which, up until very recently, has been Silicon Dioxide (SiO2). It provides a necessary electrical barrier which allows transistors to function, but as features get smaller that barrier is becoming less and less efficient. Alternate materials are needed because at the current thickness of only five atomic layers (5 atoms high), it just won't cut it any longer. Researchers are looking for what's called a "high-k" dielectric, or something that has a high dielectric constant. This high-k solution will provide the necessary barrier to keep Moore's Law trucking along for quite some time.

Source:
tgdaily.com

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