Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > High, not flat: nanowires for a new chip architecture

3D scheme of a usual transistor (left) and of a novel vertical transistor made out of silicon. The arrows symbolize the current flow. Sander Münster, Dresden.
3D scheme of a usual transistor (left) and of a novel vertical transistor made out of silicon. The arrows symbolize the current flow. Sander Münster, Dresden.

Abstract:
Silicon is the most prevalent material in electronics, no matter whether for mobile phones, solar cells or computers. Nanometer-sized wires made of silicon have a large potential for a completely new chip architecture. But this requires a detailed investigation and understanding of their electronic properties which is technologically challenging due to the ultra-small size of the nanowires. Researchers from the Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics and the Forschungszentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (FZD) were able to describe the electrical resistance and current flow inside individual silicon nanowires. The results were published in the journal NANO LETTERS.

High, not flat: nanowires for a new chip architecture

Dresden, Germany | Posted on February 2nd, 2010

Nowadays, a myriad of silicon transistors are responsible to pass on the information on a microchip. The transistors are arranged in a planar array, i.e. lying flat next to each other, and have shrunk down already to a size of only about 50 nanometers (1 nanometer = 1 millionth part of 1 millimeter). Further miniaturization of transistors with a planar structure will soon come to an end due to fundamental physical limits. Still, even smaller transistors are desirable in order to continuously improve their functions while reducing the cost of the electronics.

Currently, researchers are working hard to find new approaches to overcome the physical limits on downscaling and integration of microchips. One such concept is to fabricate a completely new transistor architecture in three-dimensions. In this concept, instead of arranging them flat on the substrate the silicon transistors are turned by 90 degrees so that they stick out of the chip substrate like tiny columns. In this way, numerous vertical transistors could be built on the area normally occupied by only one planar transistor. This would finally be the step from micro to nanoelectronics.

The fabrication of vertical silicon nanowire arrays has already been reported. Yet there needs to be a more thorough research into the electrical properties of silicon nanowires in order to be able to build reliable transistors for a new generation of microchips. Unlike conventional transistors, the current flow in these column-like transistors will be vertical, and they will be smaller and more energy-saving than today. Last but not least, there are high hopes to fabricate extremely efficient solar cells using silicon nanowires.

The Max Planck researchers in Halle produce monocrystalline silicon nanowires which are particularly suitable as components for microchips. At the FZD's ion beam center, foreign atoms known as ‘dopants' are implanted into the nanowires. The dopants occupy lattice sites of the host semiconductor increasing the electrical conductivity and the current flow through the semiconductor. Selective implantation of different dopants can change the polarity of the charge carriers in a transistor leading to the switching of the current flow. The planar silicon technology is well developed; however, this is not true for silicon nanostructures. "First, we analyzed wires with a diameter of 100 nanometers and 300 nanometers in length. But what we aim at are wires with a diameter of a few atoms only, as well as wires where individual atoms are strung together. We intend to closely characterize their behavior in materials and want to find out how their electrical properties can be tailored for application in nanoelectronics, e.g. for new field-effect transistors," say FZD physicists Dr. Reinhard Koegler and Dr. Xin Ou.

The nanowires were investigated in Rossendorf using a technique (Scanning Spreading Resistance Microscopy, SSRM) that usually measures the position- dependent electrical resistivity in a specially-prepared two-dimensional cross-section of the nanowire. The resistivity is related to the atomic concentration of the dopants. In the current work, the researchers have found that the dopants in a silicon nanowire, namely boron and phorphorus, do not stay where they are expected, but drift to the surface of the nanowire where they become partially inactive and can no longer contribute to the electrical conductivity. Up until now scientists were lacking an appropriate technique to visualize and quantify the consequences of an unequal distribution of dopants at the nanoscale. Chip designers have to pay attention to the newly found results if nanowires are to be applied for vertical transistors in the future.

Publication:
Xin Ou,†,‡,§, Pratyush Das Kanungo,†, Reinhard Kögler,‡, Peter Werner,†, Ulrich Gösele,†, Wolfgang Skorupa,‡, Xi Wang, §, "Carrier Profiling of Individual Si Nanowires by Scanning Spreading Resistance Microscopy", in: Nano Letters 2010,10,171-175, DOI: 10.1021/nl903228s.

†Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics, Halle; ‡ Institute of Ion Beam Physics and Materials Research, FZD; §Shanghai Institute of Microsystem and Information Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai


####

About Forschungszentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (FZD)
The Forschungszentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, now a member of the Leibniz Association, will become new member of the Helmholtz Association as of January 2011. It is engaged in basic and application-oriented research. The main topics are:

* Advanced Materials Research
* Cancer Research
* Nuclear Safety Research

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Dr. Wolfgang Skorupa / Dr. Reinhard Kögler
Institute of Ion beam Physics and Materials Research
Forschungszentrum Dresden-Rossendorf
Phone: +49 (0) 351 260 - 3612 / - 3613

Dr. Peter Werner
Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics, Halle
Phone: +49 (0) 3455582629
www.mpi-halle.mpg.de/

Contact for the media:
Dr. Christine Bohnet
Press and public relations at FZD
Bautzner Landstr. 400, 01328 Dresden
Phone: +49 (0) 351 260 - 2450 oder 0160 969 288 56
Fax: 0351 260 - 2700

Copyright © Forschungszentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (FZD)

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Sandia use confined nanoparticles to improve hydrogen storage materials performance: Big changes from a small package for hydrogen storage February 25th, 2017

New nano approach could cut dose of leading HIV treatment in half February 24th, 2017

Atom-scale oxidation mechanism of nanoparticles helps develop anti-corrosion materials February 24th, 2017

Atomic force imaging used to study nematodes: KFU bionanotechnology lab (head - Dr. Rawil Fakhrullin) has obtained 3-D images of nematodes' cuticles February 23rd, 2017

Possible Futures

Sandia use confined nanoparticles to improve hydrogen storage materials performance: Big changes from a small package for hydrogen storage February 25th, 2017

New nano approach could cut dose of leading HIV treatment in half February 24th, 2017

Atom-scale oxidation mechanism of nanoparticles helps develop anti-corrosion materials February 24th, 2017

EmTech Asia breaks new barriers with potential applications of space exploration with NASA and MIT February 22nd, 2017

Chip Technology

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Announces Availability of 45nm RF SOI to Advance 5G Mobile Communications: Optimized RF features deliver high-performance solutions for mmWave beam forming applications in 5G smartphones and base stations February 22nd, 2017

Strem Chemicals and Dotz Nano Ltd. Sign Distribution Agreement for Graphene Quantum Dots Collaboration February 21st, 2017

Particles from outer space are wreaking low-grade havoc on personal electronics February 19th, 2017

Liquid metal nano printing set to revolutionize electronics: Creating integrated circuits just atoms thick February 18th, 2017

Nanoelectronics

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Announces Availability of 45nm RF SOI to Advance 5G Mobile Communications: Optimized RF features deliver high-performance solutions for mmWave beam forming applications in 5G smartphones and base stations February 22nd, 2017

Particles from outer space are wreaking low-grade havoc on personal electronics February 19th, 2017

Liquid metal nano printing set to revolutionize electronics: Creating integrated circuits just atoms thick February 18th, 2017

1,000 times more efficient nano-LED opens door to faster microchips February 5th, 2017

Announcements

Sandia use confined nanoparticles to improve hydrogen storage materials performance: Big changes from a small package for hydrogen storage February 25th, 2017

New nano approach could cut dose of leading HIV treatment in half February 24th, 2017

Atom-scale oxidation mechanism of nanoparticles helps develop anti-corrosion materials February 24th, 2017

Atomic force imaging used to study nematodes: KFU bionanotechnology lab (head - Dr. Rawil Fakhrullin) has obtained 3-D images of nematodes' cuticles February 23rd, 2017

Tools

Atomic force imaging used to study nematodes: KFU bionanotechnology lab (head - Dr. Rawil Fakhrullin) has obtained 3-D images of nematodes' cuticles February 23rd, 2017

JPK selects compact tensile stage from Deben for their NanoWizard® AFM platform to broaden capabilities for materials characterisation February 22nd, 2017

Molecular phenomenon discovered by advanced NMR facility: Cutting edge technology has shown a molecule self-assembling into different forms when passing between solution state to solid state, and back again - a curious phenomenon in science - says research by the University of Wa February 22nd, 2017

Strem Chemicals and Dotz Nano Ltd. Sign Distribution Agreement for Graphene Quantum Dots Collaboration February 21st, 2017

Solar/Photovoltaic

Strem Chemicals and Dotz Nano Ltd. Sign Distribution Agreement for Graphene Quantum Dots Collaboration February 21st, 2017

'Lossless' metamaterial could boost efficiency of lasers and other light-based devices February 20th, 2017

Material can turn sunlight, heat and movement into electricity -- all at once: Extracting energy from multiple sources could help power wearable technology February 9th, 2017

NREL research pinpoints promise of polycrystalline perovskites February 8th, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



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











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project