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30 Mar 2015

5512898893ecc

by Tom Abate @ phys.org:

Computer chips, solar cells and other electronic devices have traditionally been based on silicon, the most famous of the semiconductors, that special class of materials whose unique electronic properties can be manipulated to turn electricity on and off the way faucets control the flow of water.

There are other semiconductors. Gallium arsenide is one such material and it has certain technical advantages over silicon – electrons race through its crystalline structure faster than they can move through silicon.

But silicon has a crushing commercial advantage. It is roughly a thousand times cheaper to make. As a result, gallium arsenide-based devices are only used in niche applications where their special capabilities justify their higher cost.

Cellphones, for instance, typically rely on speedy gallium arsenide chips to process the high-frequency radio signals that arrive faster than silicon can handle.

New process could make gallium arsenide cheaper for computer chips, solar cells - [Link]

27 Mar 2015

UHVCVD-2

by R. Colin Johnson @ eetimes.com:

PORTLAND, Oregon — Scientists trying to fulfill the 80-year-old dream of Nobel laureate Eugene Wigner, recently discovered how to place crystalline lattices of pure electrons in the bottom of a silicon-encased quantum well. The resulting material promises electron mobility more than 200 times greater than that of graphene and more than 1,700 times that of crystalline silicon.

So far, the work is still at the level of fundamental physics, but if researchers make the kind of advances they anticipate they could open a door to significant applications in semiconductors.

Scientists Pursue Super-Fast Material - [Link]

23 Mar 2015

self-correcting-quantum-device

by Colin Jeffrey @ gizmag.com:

Before the dream of quantum computing is realized, a number of inherent problems must first be solved. One of these is the ability to maintain a stable memory system that overcomes the intrinsic instability of the basic unit of information in quantum computing – the quantum bit or “qubit”. To address this problem, Physicists working at the University of California Berkeley (UC Berkeley) claim to have created breakthrough circuitry that continuously self-checks for inaccuracies to consistently maintain the error-free status of the quantum memory.

First-ever quantum device that detects and corrects its own errors - [Link]

4 Mar 2015

dendrite-free-battery-0

by Colin Jeffrey @ gizmag.com:

Dendrites – thin conductive filaments that form inside lithium batteries – reduce the life of these cells and are often responsible for them catching fire. Scientists working at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) of the US Department of Energy claim to have produced a new electrolyte for lithium batteries that not only completely eliminates dendrites, but also promises to increase battery efficiency and vastly improve current carrying capacity.

New electrolyte promises to rid lithium batteries of short-circuiting dendrites - [Link]


24 Feb 2015

rcj_Quantum_Transistor_TACC_MoS2_3

by R. Colin Johnson @ eetimes.com:

A new type of transistor harnesses a new effect–called the quantum spin Hall effect — to create a topological field effect transistor (TFET) according to a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researcher who recently moved to the newly formed Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Texas A&M University where the Texas Advanced Computer Center (TACC) confirmed the researcher’s results.

“We found that when deposited in a flat sheet just three atoms thick, our crystalline lattices exhibited a new electronic effect we call the quantum spin Hall effect,” professor Xiaofeng Qian told EE Times.

Transistors Prelude Quantum Computers - [Link]

26 Jan 2015

germanium-tin-laser-2

by Colin Jeffrey @ gizmag.com:

Swiss scientists have created the first semiconductor laser consisting solely of elements of main group IV (the carbon group) on the periodic table. Simply, this means that the new device is directly compatible with other elements in that group – such as silicon, carbon, and lead – and so can be directly incorporated in a silicon chip as it is manufactured. This presents new possibilities for transmitting data around computer chips using light, which could result in potential transfer speeds exponentially faster than possible with copper wire and using only a fraction of the energy of today’s integrated circuits.

First germanium-tin semiconductor laser directly compatible with silicon chips - [Link]

23 Jan 2015

4-scientistsdiby Curt Richter @ phys.org:

Two-dimensional (2D) materials such as molybdenum-disulfide (MoS2) are attracting much attention for future electronic and photonic applications ranging from high-performance computing to flexible and pervasive sensors and optoelectronics. But in order for their promise to be realized, scientists need to understand how the performance of devices made with 2D materials is affected by different kinds of metal electrical contacts.

Researchers in PML’s Semiconductor & Dimensional Metrology Division, in collaboration with researchers from George Mason University, compared silver and titanium contacts on MoS2 transistors to determine the influence of the metal–MoS2 interface.

Scientists discover a better metal contact that improves two-dimensional transistor performance - [Link]

30 Dec 2014
Laser causes oxygen atoms (red) to vibrate between layers of copper (blue) oxide that are just two molecules thick in a common high-temperature superconducting material known as YBCO in a way that  likely indicates superconductivity.

Laser causes oxygen atoms (red) to vibrate between layers of copper (blue) oxide that are just two molecules thick in a common high-temperature superconducting material known as YBCO in a way that
likely indicates superconductivity.

Superconducting at up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit has been demonstrated at the U.S. National Accelerator Laboratory, but the catch to room temperature superconducing today is that it only lasts for pico-second pulses, but they hope to extend the time to DC: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog and EE Times.

Superconducting at 140 Degrees F - [Link]

26 Dec 2014

RE-NET-graphic

by Amy Norcross @ edn.com:

A team of University Wisconsin-Madison researchers, with support from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA’s) Reliable Neural-Interface Technology (RE-NET) program, have developed “invisible” implantable medical sensor arrays that will not block views of brain activity. Their research was published in the Oct. 20 issue of Nature Communications.

According to a recent Phys.org article, “electrical monitoring and stimulation of neuronal signaling is a mainstay technique for studying brain function, while emerging optical techniques—which use photons instead of electrons—are opening new opportunities for visualizing neural network structure and exploring brain functions. Electrical and optical techniques offer distinct and complementary advantages that, if used together, could offer profound benefits for studying the brain at high resolution. Combining these technologies is challenging, however, because conventional metal electrode technologies are too thick (>500 nm) to be transparent to light, making them incompatible with many optical approaches.”

Implantable, transparent sensors give researchers a better view of brain activity - [Link]

24 Dec 2014

d0031214-hr_600

A new material may offer a new avenue to room temperature superconductivity according to researchers at Brookhaven National Laboratory: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog and EE Times.

Superconductivity Exhibited by New Material with Room Temp Hopes - [Link]



 
 
 

 

 

 

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