When searching for the technology to boost computer speeds and improve memory density, the best things come in the smallest packages. A relentless move toward smaller and more precisely defined semiconductors has prompted researchers at Argonne National Laboratory to develop a new technique that can dramatically improve the efficiency and reduce the cost of preparing different classes of semiconducting materials.
An important chemical species, molecular oxygen is linear, has an anisotropic shape, and spins from two unpaired electrons. However, until now, we didn’t know how these properties influenced important oxidation reactions. Researchers in Japan have now reported development of the world's first molecular oxygen beam that can designate the alignment of the molecular axis and spin direction.
A materials scientist at Michigan Technological University has discovered a chemical reaction that not only eats up the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, it also creates something useful. And, by the way, it releases energy.
With the advent of the solid-state transistor and semi-conductor-based flat panel display technology, the vacuum tube has virtually disappeared from consumer electronics. But a team of researchers in Korea and at NASA’s Ames Research Center have combined the best traits of both technologies to create a vacuum channel transistor just 150 nm long.
A year after a researcher at Linköping University in Sweden built a fully functional field-effect transistor from plastic, another scientist at the same institution has shown that it is possible to control these transistors with great precision, allowing the device to function as a logic circuit.
There's nothing worse than a shonky pool table with an unseen groove or bump that sends your shot off course. A new study has found that the same goes at the nano-scale, where the "billiard balls" are tiny electrons moving across a "table" made of the semiconductor gallium arsenide.
After studies involving advanced simulations of nanoscale magnetic and materials phenomena, a team of scientists in Germany have proposed making use of magnetic moments in chains of iron atoms to allow information to be transported on the nanoscale in a fast and energy-efficient manner. The scheme, demonstrated in experiments, would work over a wide temperature range, remaining largely unaffected by external magnetic fields.
Gallium nitride, a semiconductor material found in bright lights since the 1990s, is used in wireless applications because of its high efficiency and high voltage operation. However, it’s difficult to remove heat from GaN electronics, which limits applications and markets. Researchers at the University of California, Riverside, have made a material from graphene that does the job, and it looks a lot like a patterned quilt.
White-light quantum dots made from cadmium selenide can convert blue light produced by a light-emitting diode into a warm white light similar to that generated by an incandescent bulb. But their performance has been poor until recent development breakthroughs have improved efficiency from just 3% originally to as high as 45%.
By using diamond-tipped tools to apply pressure, a team led by Johns Hopkins engineers has discovered some previously unknown electrical properties of a common memory material, a mix of germanium, antimony, and tellurium called GST. The discovery should make GST more useful for electronics developers by allowing memory formats that retain data more quickly, last longer, and allow far more capacity.
University of California, Los Angeles researchers and their colleagues have developed a novel screening technology that allows large batches of metal-oxide nanomaterials to be assessed quickly, based on their ability to trigger certain biological responses in cells as a result of their semiconductor properties.
Scientists from Imperial College London have collaborated with colleagues at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia to produce organic thin-film transistors that consistently achieve record-breaking carrier mobility through careful solution-processing of a blend of two organic semiconductors.
While investigating the behavior of a hybrid nanomaterial made from carbon nanotubes and tin oxide nanoparticles, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee scientists synthesized an entirely new graphene-based material they are calling graphene monoxide. The notable feature of the material, which does not exist in nature, is its ordered, semiconducting properties.
In optomechanics studies, most researchers use a moving mirror made up of 16 to 40 layers of dielectric film with different indices of refraction, culminating in a stack structure a few micrometers thick. With this they measure the force of light on mechanical features. A team of scientists in Germany, however, have designed and tested a device that is both smaller and two orders of magnitude more effective.
Researchers in the U.K. have demonstrated that a honeycomb pattern of nano-sized magnets, in a material known as spin ice, introduces competition between neighboring magnets, and reduces the problems caused by these interactions by two-thirds. Large arrays of these nano-magnets, they say, can store computable information.
At this week’s American Chemical Society meeting in San Diego, Rice University chemist James Tour revealed a new device his laboratory has invented. Using silicon oxide as the active component, his team has made a transparent, flexible memory technology that could be combined with other see-through components such as integrated circuits and batteries.
Previous efforts to integrated lasers in silicon chips have relied on and air-and-semiconductor interface, but this has resulted in poor emission efficiency. Researchers in Singapore have invented a solution called a micro-loop mirror that acts as a waveguide to improve operation to 98% light reflection efficiency.
Researchers at the University of Notre Dame and Pennsylvania State University have announced breakthroughs in the development of tunneling field effect transistors (TFETs), a semiconductor technology that takes advantage of the quirky behavior of electrons at the quantum level.
So far, quantum bits have only existed in relatively large vacuum chambers. A research team in Germany, with help from colleagues in Japan and France, has now generated them in a high-quality gallium arsenide crystal.
Researchers at CRANN, a nanoscience institute based in Trinity College Dublin, have discovered a new material could fill a previously missing component in display electronics—a good quality p-type transparent conducting oxide.
While diamonds may be a girl's best friend, they're also well loved by scientists working to enhance the performance of electronic devices. Two new studies performed at Argonne National Laboratory have revealed a new pathway for materials scientists to use previously unexplored properties of nanocrystalline-diamond thin films.
Researchers at Helmholtz Center in Germany have developed a magnetic valve that could be an enabling technology for spintronics. The new structure allows for data to remain stored even after electric current has been cut, and memory in the valve can be re-written indefinitely.
Broadly speaking, the two major areas of research at Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Microsystems Technology Laboratory are electronics—transistors in particular—and microelectromechanical systems, or MEMS—tiny mechanical devices with moving parts. Both strains of research could have significant implications for manufacturing in the United States, but at least for the moment, the market for transistor innovation is far larger.
Although the tiny device measures no more than 8 x 8 mm it takes eight weeks to produce a silicon drift detector (SDD), or silicon drift diode, which is a basic spectroscopic component of instruments like medical X-ray systems and detectors at CERN. Scientists in Norway represent one of just three worldwide suppliers of these exceedingly sensitive and difficult-to-produce devices.
Researchers at the Max Planck Institute have put together a sandwich of a ferroelectric layer between two ferromagnetic materials that responded to a short electric pulse. This changes the magnetic transport properties of the material in such a way that information can be placed in four states instead of just two. The potential increase in storage density is great.