14 February 2010

Big Blue demos 100GHz chip

Time to rev up this blog thingie again. Lots is going on, including some developments that seem quite practical for commercialization in the not-too-distant future.

Consider, from The Register in England:

Big Blue demos 100GHz chip

IBM reseachers have made a breakthrough in the development of ultra-high-speed transistor design, creating a 100GHz graphene-based wafer-scale device. And that's just for starters.
The transistor that the researchers have developed is a relatively large one, with a gate length of 240 nanometers - speeds should increase as the gate length shrinks.
The field-effect transistor that the IBM team developed exploits what a paper published in the journal Science understates as the "very high carrier mobilities" of graphene, a one-atom-thick sheet of carbon atoms grown on a silicon substrate.
This extraordinarily thin sheet is grown on the silicon epitaxially, meaning that it's created in an ordered crystaline structure on top of another crystaline structure - in this case, good ol' garden-variety silicon.

I wrote about graphene back in the Summer of 2007, noting it seemed more tractable for utilization in manufacturing processes than its more-glamorous siblings, carbon nanotubes. And so it seems: the fact that IBM's development is based on "garden-variety silicon" is a wonderful testament to recombinant innovation and promises practical adoption before too long. It seems hackneyed and threadworn to haul out Moore's Law one more time, but here it is again, keeping pace.

No comments: