Will Silicon Valley make way for nanotube valley?

March 19, 2004

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (www.ucr.edu) -- A team of University of California, Riverside researchers received $1.5 million from the Microelectronics Advanced Research Corporation (MARCO), a not-for-profit research management organization, to create a new generation of nanoscale materials and devices to make computers and other semiconductor-based devices faster, cheaper and more efficient.

The UCR team is working with UCLA's Focus Center on Functional Engineered Nano Architectonics (FENA). UCR electrical engineering professor Roger Lake, who is leading the UCR team, says that sometime during the next decade silicon will reach the end of its ability to become smaller and faster, and there is now a huge effort underway to devise new materials.

"Silicon has been driving the semiconductor industry for 40 years, and for 40 years it has become exponentially smaller and faster," Lake said. "Now people are looking real hard for add-ons to silicon."

Something close, Lake says, are carbon nanotubes. "IBM has done a lot of work in that area," Lake said. "They have built them individually and tested them, and they make pretty good transistors, but no one has a good idea of how to put a billion of them on a chip and have them all working together. The problem is one of integration." He said if this problem is solved, it will set the direction of scientific research and commercial development for the next 50 years.

Recent studies using carbon nanotubes prove they can hold significantly more data than silicon chips. Products that could be improved using these materials include bomb and chemical detection devices and super high-speed computers. The work the researchers are doing could also lead to eventual production and packing improvements for relevant devices, possibly resulting in lower consumer costs. The UCR team is pursuing an approach of chemical and biological self-synthesis for molecular electronic integration using technology from biosensing and NEMS (nano electrical mechanical systems).

If the team can surmount current obstacles, Lake says, a new integration process will be born.

UCR team members joining Lake are engineering professors Alex Balandin, Mihri Ozkan and Cengiz Ozkan. Engineering professor Jianlin Liu is an independent member of the center, researching nano-structured materials for single-electron memory. The team of researchers from UCR is the largest outside group working with FENA.

According to the corporation's Web site, MARCO funds and operates university-based research centers in microelectronics technology. Its charter initiative, the Focus Center Research Program, is designed to expand cooperative, long-range microelectronics research at U.S. universities. For more information, go to http://fcrp.src.org
-end-


University of California - Riverside

Related Carbon Nanotubes Articles from Brightsurf:

How plantains and carbon nanotubes can improve cars
Researchers from the University of Johannesburg have shown that plantain, a starchy type of banana, is a promising renewable source for an emerging type of lighter, rust-free composite materials for the automotive industry.

New production method for carbon nanotubes gets green light
A new method of producing carbon nanotubes -- tiny molecules with incredible physical properties used in touchscreen displays, 5G networks and flexible electronics -- has been given the green light by researchers, meaning work in this crucial field can continue.

Growing carbon nanotubes with the right twist
Researchers synthetize nanotubes with a specific structure expanding previous theories on carbon nanotube growth.

Research shows old newspapers can be used to grow carbon nanotubes
New research has found that old newspaper provide a cheap and green solution for the bulk production of single walled carbon nanotubes.

Clean carbon nanotubes with superb properties
Scientists at Aalto University, Finland, and Nagoya University, Japan, have found a new way to make ultra-clean carbon nanotube transistors with superior semiconducting properties.

Dietary fiber effectively purifies carbon nanotubes
A dietary fiber can help separate out semiconducting carbon nanotubes used for making transistors for flexible electronics.

Why modified carbon nanotubes can help the reproducibility problem
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) conducted an in-depth study on how carbon nanotubes with oxygen-containing groups can be used to greatly enhance the performance of perovskite solar cells.

Tensile strength of carbon nanotubes depends on their chiral structures
Single-walled carbon nanotubes should theoretically be extremely strong, but it remains unclear why their experimental tensile strengths are lower and vary among nanotubes.

New study reveals carbon nanotubes measurement possible for the first time
Swansea University scientists report an entirely new approach to manipulation of carbon nanotubes that allows physical measurements to be made on carbon nanotubes that have previously only been possible by theoretical computation.

Neural networks will help manufacture carbon nanotubes
A team of scientists from Skoltech's Laboratory of Nanomaterials proposed a neural-network-based method for monitoring the growth of carbon nanotubes, preparing the ground for a new generation of sophisticated electronic devices.

Read More: Carbon Nanotubes News and Carbon Nanotubes Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.