Power/Performance Bits: June 7

Tiny lasers on silicon A group of scientists from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, the University of California, Santa Barbara, Sandia National Laboratories, and Harvard University were able to fabricate tiny lasers directly on silicon. To do this, they first had to resolve silicon crystal lattice defects to a point where the cavities were essentially equivalent to those gr... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Dec. 23

GaN building blocks A team of engineers from Cornell University, the University of Notre Dame, and the semiconductor company IQE created gallium nitride (GaN) power diodes capable of serving as the building blocks for future GaN power switches. In spite of having many desirable features as a material, GaN is notorious for its defects and reliability issues. So the team zeroed in on device... » read more

Week 6: Still In Wow-Land

While the conflicts around the world are overshadowing my complete euphoria, I have to admit that I’m still in Fussball wow-land right now. Germany won the World Cup! What an amazing goal from youngster Mario Goetze! Here is what the 22-year-old forward from Bayern-Muenchen had to say after the game: “Andre [Schurrle] put in a superb ball and I was able to control it on my chest, then someh... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Jan. 14

MoS2 FETs Two-dimensional materials are gaining steam in the R&D labs. The 2D materials include graphene, boron nitride (BN) and the transition-metal dichalcogenides (TMDs). One TMD, molybdenum diselenide (MoS2), is an attractive material for use in future field-effect transistors (FETs). MoS2 has several properties, including a non-zero band gap, atomic scale thickness and pristine int... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Jan. 7

Climbing Terminator Robots Simon Fraser University has developed a family of climbing robots that mimic the stickiness of gecko lizard feet. Based on a “footpad terminator” adhesive technology, the robots could be used in space missions and on Earth. The climbing robot, called Abigaille, features six legs. This allows the robots to crawl on vertical and horizontal structures. The techno... » read more

Tunnel FETs Emerge In Scaling Race

Traditional CMOS scaling will continue for the foreseeable future, possibly to the 5nm node and perhaps beyond, according to many chipmakers. In fact, chipmakers already are plotting out a path toward the 5nm node, but needless to say, the industry faces a multitude of challenges along the road. Presently, the leading transistor candidates for 5nm are the usual suspects—III-V finFETs; gate... » read more