The future of computing may lie not in electrons, but in photons -- in microprocessors that use light instead of electrical signals. But these photonic devices are typically built using customized methods that make them difficult and expensive to manufacture. Now, engineers have demonstrated that low power photonic devices can be fabricated using standard chip-making processes. The team dubs this a major milestone in photonic technology.
Electronics are getting smaller all the time, but there's a limit to how tiny they can get with today's materials. Researchers now say, however, that they have developed a way to shrink capacitors - key components that store energy - even further, which could accelerate the development of more compact, high-performance next-gen devices.
The debut of cyborgs who are part human and part machine may be a long way off, but researchers say they now may be getting closer. In a new study, they report development of a coating that makes nanoelectronics much more stable in conditions mimicking those in the human body. The advance could also aid in the development of very small implanted medical devices for monitoring health and disease.
Providing secure wireless connections and improving the efficiency of communication devices could be another application for graphene, as demonstrated by scientists at Queen Mary University of London and the Cambridge Graphene Centre.
Researchers have tested a new approach to fabricating spin valves. Using ion beams, the researchers have succeeded in structuring an iron aluminium alloy in such a way as to subdivide the material into individually magnetizable regions at the nanometer scale. The prepared alloy is thus able to function as a spin valve, which is of great interest as a candidate component for use in spintronics.
These new interconnections, made of a rubbery transparent material called PDMS (poly-dimethylsiloxane), guide light along their path even when stretched up to 30% and when bent around an object the diameter of a human finger.
A research collaboration consisting of IHP-Innovations for High Performance Microelectronics in Germany and the Georgia Institute of Technology has demonstrated the world's fastest silicon-based device to date.