University of Texas at Dallas (UT Dallas) researchers recently detailed their breakthroughs in developing a transistor with a new combination of new materials that allows for exciting size reductions in a study in Science.
“As of today, the best, smallest silicon
transistor devices commercially available have a gate length larger than 10
nanometers,” UT Dallas professor Dr. Moon Kim said. “The theoretical lower limit for silicon transistors is about 5
nanometers. The device we demonstrate in this article has a gate size of 1
nanometer, about one order of magnitude smaller. It should be possible to
reduce the size of a computer chip significantly utilizing this configuration.”
Kim coauthored the study with graduate
student Qingxiao Wang and researchers from the University of California,
Berkeley; Stanford University; and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Led
by the latter institution, UT Dallas researchers contributed to the project
through characterization of the transistor, accomplished with an atomic
resolution electron microscope.
“The device we demonstrated shows more than
two orders of magnitude reduction in leakage current compared to its silicon
counterpart, which results in reduced power consumption,” Kim said. “What this
means, for example, is that a cellphone with this technology built in would not
have to be recharged as often.”
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