System Bits: Sept. 6

How might AI affect urban life in 2030? In an ongoing project hosted by Stanford University to inform societal deliberation and provide guidance on the ethical development of smart software, sensors and machines, a panel of academic and industrial thinkers has looked ahead to 2030 to forecast how advances in artificial intelligence (AI) might affect life in a typical North American city. Th... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Feb. 16

Monoxide chips Two-dimensional (2D) materials are gaining steam in the R&D labs. The 2D materials could enable a new class of field-effect transistors (FETs), but the technology isn’t expected to appear until sometime in the next decade. The 2D materials include graphene, boron nitride and the transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDs). One TMD, molybdenum diselenide (MoS2), is gaining inter... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Dec. 29

Printing hair Using a low-cost, 3D printing technique, Carnegie Mellon University has found a way to produce hair-like strands and fibers. The printer produces plastic hair strand by strand. It takes about 20-25 minutes to generate hair on 10 square millimeters. A video can be seen here. [caption id="attachment_24544" align="alignleft" width="300"] 3D printed hair (Photo: Carnegie Mellon... » read more

System Bits: Sept.1

The quantum description of nature In quantum mechanics, the underlying physical rules that govern the fundamental behavior of matter and light at the atomic scale state that nothing can quite be completely at rest, but now for the first time, a team of researchers from Caltech, McGill University, and the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light has found a way to observe—and control—t... » read more

System Bits: April 21

DARPA's Research DARPA's Semiconductor Technology Advanced Research Network, aka Starnet, unveiled its research plans for 2015 and 2016. Topping the list in 2015 is an investigation into the feasibility of using advanced 2D materials for ultra low-power devices, along with the fab methodology, modeling and simulation tools necessary to make it all work. The fiscal 2015 research will look a... » read more

One-On-One: Aaron Thean

Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss process technology, transistor trends and other topics with Aaron Thean, vice president of process technologies and director of the logic devices R&D program at Imec. SE: Chipmakers are ramping up the 16nm/14nm logic node, with 10nm and 7nm in R&D. What’s the current timeline for 10nm and 7nm? Thean: 10nm is on its way. We will see r... » read more

System Bits: April 29

Beyond graphene Researchers at The University of Manchester have shown how they can control the properties of stacks of 2D materials, opening up the potential for new, previously-unimagined electronic devices. The isolation of graphene at the University in 2004 led to the discovery of many other 2D crystals and while graphene has an unrivaled set of superlatives, these crystals cover a larg... » read more