Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors
Heifer International



Home > Press > Ultra-thin memory storage device paves way for more powerful computing

Illustration of a voltage-induced memory effect in monolayer nanomaterials, which layer to create "atomristors," the thinnest memory storage device that could lead to faster, smaller and smarter computer chips.

CREDIT
Cockrell School of Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin
Illustration of a voltage-induced memory effect in monolayer nanomaterials, which layer to create "atomristors," the thinnest memory storage device that could lead to faster, smaller and smarter computer chips. CREDIT Cockrell School of Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin

Abstract:
Engineers worldwide have been developing alternative ways to provide greater memory storage capacity on even smaller computer chips. Previous research into two-dimensional atomic sheets for memory storage has failed to uncover their potential -- until now.

Ultra-thin memory storage device paves way for more powerful computing

Austin, TX | Posted on January 17th, 2018

A team of electrical engineers at The University of Texas at Austin, in collaboration with Peking University scientists, has developed the thinnest memory storage device with dense memory capacity, paving the way for faster, smaller and smarter computer chips for everything from consumer electronics to big data to brain-inspired computing.

"For a long time, the consensus was that it wasn't possible to make memory devices from materials that were only one atomic layer thick," said Deji Akinwande, associate professor in the Cockrell School of Engineering's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. "With our new 'atomristors,' we have shown it is indeed possible."

Made from 2-D nanomaterials, the "atomristors" -- a term Akinwande coined -- improve upon memristors, an emerging memory storage technology with lower memory scalability. He and his team published their findings in the January issue of Nano Letters.

"Atomristors will allow for the advancement of Moore's Law at the system level by enabling the 3-D integration of nanoscale memory with nanoscale transistors on the same chip for advanced computing systems," Akinwande said.

Memory storage and transistors have, to date, always been separate components on a microchip, but atomristors combine both functions on a single, more efficient computer system. By using metallic atomic sheets (graphene) as electrodes and semiconducting atomic sheets (molybdenum sulfide) as the active layer, the entire memory cell is a sandwich about 1.5 nanometers thick, which makes it possible to densely pack atomristors layer by layer in a plane. This is a substantial advantage over conventional flash memory, which occupies far larger space. In addition, the thinness allows for faster and more efficient electric current flow.

Given their size, capacity and integration flexibility, atomristors can be packed together to make advanced 3-D chips that are crucial to the successful development of brain-inspired computing. One of the greatest challenges in this burgeoning field of engineering is how to make a memory architecture with 3-D connections akin to those found in the human brain.

"The sheer density of memory storage that can be made possible by layering these synthetic atomic sheets onto each other, coupled with integrated transistor design, means we can potentially make computers that learn and remember the same way our brains do," Akinwande said.

The research team also discovered another unique application for the technology. In existing ubiquitous devices such as smartphones and tablets, radio frequency switches are used to connect incoming signals from the antenna to one of the many wireless communication bands in order for different parts of a device to communicate and cooperate with one another. This activity can significantly affect a smartphone's battery life.

The atomristors are the smallest radio frequency memory switches to be demonstrated with no DC battery consumption, which can ultimately lead to longer battery life.

"Overall, we feel that this discovery has real commercialization value as it won't disrupt existing technologies," Akinwande said. "Rather, it has been designed to complement and integrate with the silicon chips already in use in modern tech devices."

###

Funding for the UT Austin team's work was provided by the National Science Foundation and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, which Akinwande was awarded in 2015.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Adrienne Lee

512-471-7541

Copyright © University of Texas at Austin

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 Links

RELATED JOURNAL ARTICLE:

Related News Press

News and information

Biology’s hardest working pigments and ‘MOFs’ might just save the climate: A range of processes that currently depend on fossil fuels but are really hard to electrify will depend on the development of genuinely clean fuels, and for that to happen, much more efficient catalysts wi July 22nd, 2022

Generating power where seawater and river water meet July 22nd, 2022

First electric nanomotor made from DNA material: Synthetic rotary motors at the nanoscale perform mechanical work July 22nd, 2022

At the water’s edge: Self-assembling 2D materials at a liquid–liquid interface: Scientists find a simple way to produce heterolayer coordination nanosheets, expanding the diversity of 2D materials July 22nd, 2022

Hardware

A Carbon Nanotube Microprocessor Mature Enough to Say Hello: Three new breakthroughs make commercial nanotube processors possible March 2nd, 2020

Powering the future: Smallest all-digital circuit opens doors to 5 nm next-gen semiconductor February 11th, 2020

SUNY Poly Professor Partners with Leading Institutions on NSF Award for Quantum Information Science Research: SUNY Poly Research Builds Upon Recent Quantum-related Research Initiatives and Workshops January 27th, 2020

Do you Kyoto? World-leading companies share their approaches to environmentally friendly business at NAUM’19 October 14th, 2019

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

UNC Charlotte-led team invents new anticoagulant platform, offering hope for advances for heart surgery, dialysis, other procedures July 15th, 2022

Strain-sensing smart skin ready to deploy: Nanotube-embedded coating detects threats from wear and tear in large structures July 15th, 2022

Rensselaer researchers learn to control electron spin at room temperature to make devices more efficient and faster: Electron spin, rather than charge, holds the key July 15th, 2022

Crystal phase engineering offers glimpse of future potential, researchers say July 15th, 2022

Possible Futures

Biology’s hardest working pigments and ‘MOFs’ might just save the climate: A range of processes that currently depend on fossil fuels but are really hard to electrify will depend on the development of genuinely clean fuels, and for that to happen, much more efficient catalysts wi July 22nd, 2022

Generating power where seawater and river water meet July 22nd, 2022

First electric nanomotor made from DNA material: Synthetic rotary motors at the nanoscale perform mechanical work July 22nd, 2022

At the water’s edge: Self-assembling 2D materials at a liquid–liquid interface: Scientists find a simple way to produce heterolayer coordination nanosheets, expanding the diversity of 2D materials July 22nd, 2022

Chip Technology

The best semiconductor of them all? Researchers have found a material that can perform much better than silicon. The next step is finding practical and economic ways to make it July 22nd, 2022

Buckyballs on gold are less exotic than graphene July 22nd, 2022

Quantum computer works with more than zero and one: Quantum digits unlock more computational power with fewer quantum particles July 22nd, 2022

At the water’s edge: Self-assembling 2D materials at a liquid–liquid interface: Scientists find a simple way to produce heterolayer coordination nanosheets, expanding the diversity of 2D materials July 22nd, 2022

Memory Technology

Quantum network nodes with warm atoms June 24th, 2022

Boron nitride nanotube fibers get real: Rice lab creates first heat-tolerant, stable fibers from wet-spinning process June 24th, 2022

Reconfigurable silicon nanoantennas controlled by vectorial light field May 6th, 2022

Artificial neurons go quantum with photonic circuits: Quantum memristor as missing link between artificial intelligence and quantum computing March 25th, 2022

Announcements

Quantum computer works with more than zero and one: Quantum digits unlock more computational power with fewer quantum particles July 22nd, 2022

Biology’s hardest working pigments and ‘MOFs’ might just save the climate: A range of processes that currently depend on fossil fuels but are really hard to electrify will depend on the development of genuinely clean fuels, and for that to happen, much more efficient catalysts wi July 22nd, 2022

Generating power where seawater and river water meet July 22nd, 2022

First electric nanomotor made from DNA material: Synthetic rotary motors at the nanoscale perform mechanical work July 22nd, 2022

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

Buckyballs on gold are less exotic than graphene July 22nd, 2022

Quantum computer works with more than zero and one: Quantum digits unlock more computational power with fewer quantum particles July 22nd, 2022

Biology’s hardest working pigments and ‘MOFs’ might just save the climate: A range of processes that currently depend on fossil fuels but are really hard to electrify will depend on the development of genuinely clean fuels, and for that to happen, much more efficient catalysts wi July 22nd, 2022

Generating power where seawater and river water meet July 22nd, 2022

Battery Technology/Capacitors/Generators/Piezoelectrics/Thermoelectrics/Energy storage

Lithiophilic seeds and rigid arrays synergistic induced dendrite-free and stable Li anode towards long-life lithium-oxygen batteries July 22nd, 2022

Crystal phase engineering offers glimpse of future potential, researchers say July 15th, 2022

Sieving carbons: Ideal anodes for high-energy sodium-ion batteries July 1st, 2022

Two opposing approaches could give lithium-sulfur batteries a leg up over lithium-ion July 1st, 2022

Research partnerships

Crystal phase engineering offers glimpse of future potential, researchers say July 15th, 2022

New technology helps reveal inner workings of human genome June 24th, 2022

Boron nitride nanotube fibers get real: Rice lab creates first heat-tolerant, stable fibers from wet-spinning process June 24th, 2022

Undergrads begin summer quantum research with support from Moore Foundation, Chicago region universities, national labs: Inaugural cohort of students join quantum research labs around the Midwest, planting the seeds for a diverse and inclusive quantum workforce June 17th, 2022

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




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project