Stanford engineers closer to making high energy efficient computing a reality

After years of frustration, the promise and possibilities of carbon nanotube computer circuits seem within reach

Energy efficiency is the most significant challenge standing in the way of continued miniaturization of electronic systems, and miniaturization is the principal driver of the semiconductor industry. “As we approach the ultimate limits of Moore’s Law, however, silicon will have to be replaced in order to miniaturize further,” said Jeffrey Bokor, deputy director for science at the Molecular Foundry at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Professor at UC-Berkeley.

To this end, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are a significant departure from traditional silicon technologies and a very promising path to solving the challenge of energy efficiency. CNTs are cylindrical nanostructures of carbon with exceptional electrical, thermal and mechanical properties. Nanotube circuits could provide a ten-times improvement in energy efficiency over silicon.

The Stanford team’s work was featured recently as an invited paper at the prestigious International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) as well as a “keynote paper” in the highly regarded IEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems.

Check out the full press release and story at Engadget.