Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


Home > Press > 15 Moore's Years

3D chip stacking will take Moore's Law past 2020

15 Moore's Years

Zurich, Switzerland | Posted on March 10th, 2010

Some laws are made to be broken, and others are made to be followed. A team of IBM Researchers in collaboration with two Swiss partners are looking to keep one law in particular alive and well for another 15 years: Moore's Law. The law states that the number of transistors that can be placed inexpensively on an integrated circuit will double every 18 months. More than 50 years old, this law is still in effect, but to extend it as long as 2020 will require a change from mere transistor scaling to novel packaging architectures such as so-called 3D integration, the vertical integration of chips.

The end result is a diamond-like carbon material that virtually doesn't wear, mass-produced at the nanoscale. The new nano-sized tip, researchers say, wears away at the rate of only one atom per micrometer of sliding on a substrate of silicon dioxide, much lower than that for a silicon oxide tip which represents the current state-of-the-art. Consisting of carbon, hydrogen, silicon and oxygen molded into the shape of a nano-sized tip and integrated on the end of a silicon microcantilever for use in atomic force microscopy, the material has technological implications for atomic imaging, probe-based data storage and emerging applications such as nanolithography, nanometrology and nanomanufacturing.

The importance of the discovery lies not just in its size and resistance to wear but also in the hard substrate against which it was shown to perform well when in sliding contact: silicon dioxide. Because silicon—used in almost all integrated circuit devices—oxidizes in atmosphere, forming a thin layer of its oxide, this system is the most relevant for nanolithography, nanometrology and nanomanufacturing applications.

Probe-based technologies are expected to play a dominant role in many such technologies; however, poor wear performance of many materials when slid against silicon oxide, including silicon oxide itself, has severely limited their usefulness in the laboratory.

Researchers built the material from the ground up, rather than coating a nanoscale tip with wear-resistant materials. The collaboration team used a molding technique to fabricate monolithic tips on standard silicon microcantilevers. A bulk processing technique is available that has the potential to scale up for commercial manufacturing.

Robert Carpick, professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics at Penn, and his research group had previously shown that carbon-based thin films, including diamond-like carbon, had low friction and wear at the nanoscale; however, it has been difficult to fabricate nanoscale structures made out of diamond-like carbon until now.

Understanding friction and wear at the nanoscale is important for many applications that involve nanoscale components sliding on a surface.

"It is not clear whether materials that are wear-resistant at the macroscale will exhibit the same property at the nanoscale," lead author Harish Bhaskaran, who was a postdoctoral research at IBM during the study, said.

Defects, cracks and other phenomena that influence material strength and wear at macroscopic scales are less important at the nanoscale, which is why nanowires can, for example, show higher strengths than bulk samples.

The study, published in the current edition of the journal Nature Nanotechnology, was conducted collaboratively by Carpick and postdoctoral researcher Papot Jaroenapibal of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics in Penn's School of Engineering and Applied Science; Bhaskaran, Bernd Gotsmann, Abu Sebastian, Ute Drechsler, Mark A. Lantz and Michel Despont of IBM Research-Zurich; and Yun Chen and Kumar Sridharan of the University of Wisconsin. Jaroenapibal currently works at Khon Kaen University in Thailand, and Bhaskaran currently works at Yale University.

Research was funded by a European Commission grant and the Nano/Bio Interface Center of the University of Pennsylvania through the National Science Foundation.


Nicole Herfurth
Media Relations
IBM Research GmbH
IBM Research - Zurich
Säumerstrasse 4
8803 Rüschlikon

Tel +41 44 724 8445
Fax +41 44 724 8952

Copyright © IBM

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.

Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

'Material universe' yields surprising new particle November 28th, 2015

Iranian Scientists Discover New Catalyst to Remove Pharmaceutical Compounds from Wastewater November 28th, 2015

RAMAN Spectrometry Makes Characterization of Various Nanostructures Possible November 28th, 2015

Nanoparticles Boost Impact Resistance of Special Type of Polymer November 28th, 2015


'Material universe' yields surprising new particle November 28th, 2015

Dimensionality transition in a newly created material November 27th, 2015

Nanoparticles simplify DNA identification and quantification November 27th, 2015

Scientists design a QKD-based quantum private query with no failure November 25th, 2015

Chip Technology

'Material universe' yields surprising new particle November 28th, 2015

New 'self-healing' gel makes electronics more flexible November 25th, 2015

Physicists explain the unusual behavior of strongly disordered superconductors: Using a theory they developed previously, the scientists have linked superconducting carrier density with the quantum properties of a substance November 25th, 2015

Nanomagnets: Creating order out of chaos: Dresden physicists engrave nanoscale magnets directly into layer of material November 23rd, 2015


New Model Presented to Design, Produce Electronic Nanodevices November 6th, 2015

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Achieves 14nm FinFET Technology Success for Next-Generation AMD Products: Leading-edge foundry’s proven silicon technology poised to help enable significant performance and power efficiency improvements for AMD’s next-generation products November 6th, 2015

USF team finds new way of computing with interaction-dependent state change of nanomagnets: University of South Florida engineering researchers find nano-scale magnets could compute complex functions significantly faster than conventional computers October 29th, 2015

Nanoquakes probe new 2-dimensional material: Collaborative research between UC Riverside and the University of Augsburg, Germany, opens up new ways of understanding monolayer films for (opto-)electronic applications October 26th, 2015


'Material universe' yields surprising new particle November 28th, 2015

Iranian Scientists Discover New Catalyst to Remove Pharmaceutical Compounds from Wastewater November 28th, 2015

RAMAN Spectrometry Makes Characterization of Various Nanostructures Possible November 28th, 2015

Nanoparticles Boost Impact Resistance of Special Type of Polymer November 28th, 2015

Alliances/Trade associations/Partnerships/Distributorships

New EU project designed to link diagnosis and treatment of diseases over the long term: Joint research project aims at the improvement of companion diagnostics and therapy of tumor diseases November 23rd, 2015

EuroCPS, a Horizon 2020 Project, Announces Next Round Of Support for Innovative Companies and their CPS projects November 20th, 2015

Leti and Partners in Silicon Photonics Supply-Chain Project Announce Developments on Three Mature Platforms: PLAT4M Project Focused on Speeding Industrialization of the Technology November 18th, 2015

FEI and ICON Analytical Demonstrate the Power of TEM for Materials and Life Sciences Research: FEI’s Talos scanning transmission electron microscope will be available for demos and workshops at the Indian Institute of Science from 23 November to 15 December 2015 November 17th, 2015

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

Car Brands
Buy website traffic