System Bits: Sept. 3


Microprocessor built with carbon nanotubes Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology were able to design a microprocessor with carbon nanotubes and fabricate the chip with traditional processes, an advance that could be used in next-generation computers. Work on producing carbon nanotube field-effect transistors has gone on for some time. Fabricated at scale, those CNFETs oft... » read more

System Bits: Aug. 27


A ring of 18 carbon atoms Scientists at IBM Research – Zurich and Oxford University write about allotropes of carbon – the many versions of atomic carbon formations, such as diamonds and graphite. “Carbon, one of the most abundant elements in the universe, can exist in different forms - called allotropes - giving it completely different properties from color to shape to hardness. For... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Aug. 20


Making carbon nanotubes with AI Russia’s Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech) has developed a method to monitor the growth of carbon nanotubes using an artificial intelligence (AI) technology called machine learning. Skoltech used AI to predict the performance of the synthesis of single-walled carbon nanotubes using a chemical vapor deposition (CVD) process. The tec... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: June 25


Improving IGBTs Researchers at the University of Tokyo developed a power switching device that surpasses previous performance limits, showing that there may still be gains ahead for the silicon-based devices, which have been thought to be approaching their limits. The team's improved insulated gate bipolar transistor (IGBT) used a scaling approach, and simulations showed that downscaling pa... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: May 21


More speculative vulnerabilities Security researchers at the Graz University of Technology, KU Leuven, Cyberus Technology, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute point to two new speculative execution vulnerabilities related to Meltdown and Spectre. The first, which they dubbed ZombieLoad, uses a similar approach to Meltdown. After preparing tasks in parallel, the processor needs to discard th... » read more

EUV Mask Gaps And Issues


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography and photomask technologies with Emily Gallagher, principal member of the technical staff at Imec; Harry Levinson, principal at HJL Lithography; Chris Spence, vice president of advanced technology development at ASML; Banqiu Wu, senior director of process development at Applied Materials; and Aki Fujimura, chief ... » read more

A Different Kind Of Material World


The semiconductor manufacturing world is poised for big change, and the driver will be materials. Materials always have been a critical factor in semiconductors. Silicon is so important that an entire region of California is named after it. Rare earths have raised fears about nationalistic monopolies. And the shift from aluminum to copper interconnects at 130nm caused one of the most painful... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Nov. 13


ML identifies LED material Researchers at the University of Houston created a machine learning algorithm that can predict a material's properties to help find better host material candidates for LED lighting. One recommendation was synthesized and tested. The technique, a support vector machine regression model, was efficient enough to run on a personal computer. It scanned a list of 118,28... » read more

Carbon Nanotube DRAM


An IP design house has developed a scalable DRAM replacement using carbon nanotubes (CNTs) that abolishes the DRAM refresh rate, stores the content permanently, has better timing than DRAM and is scalable. And it lasts for somewhere between 300 and 12,000 years. “Carbon nanotube memory—it sounds so sexy that I could just shut up and not say anything,” said Bill Gervasi, principal syste... » read more

Memory Startups To Watch


The next-generation memories are finally ramping up after years’ of delays and promises. Intel, for one, is shipping 3D XPoint, a next-generation technology based on phase-change memory. In addition, the big foundries are readying embedded MRAM. And, of course, there are a number of other players in the next-generation memory arena. There are also a number of startups that are flying un... » read more

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