System Bits: June 10


SlothBot swings through the trees, slowly A robot that doesn’t often move, spending its days, weeks, months, in the forest canopy, monitoring the local environment – that’s SlothBot, from the Georgia Institute of Technology. The robot has two photovoltaic solar panels for its power source. It is designed to stay in the trees for months at a time. It’s gone through trials on the Geor... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: May 21


World’s loudest underwater sound A group of researchers hit tiny jets of water with a high-power X-ray laser, creating a record for the world’s loudest underwater sound. The intensity of the blast resulted in an underwater sound with an intensity greater than 270 decibels (dB). That’s greater than the intensity of a rocket launch or equivalent of creating electrical power for a city o... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: May 6


Ionic memory Sandia National Laboratories, Stanford University and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst have developed an ionic floating-gate memory array (IFG) for neuromorphic computing. For some time, the industry has been working on neuromorphic computing. The goal of neuromorphic computing is to replicate the brain in silicon. In a neuromorphic chip, the goal is to mimic the way ... » read more

System Bits: May 6


Transmitting data with a semiconductor laser Researchers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences demonstrated a laser that can emit microwaves wirelessly, modulate them, and receive external radio frequency signals. “The research opens the door to new types of hybrid electronic-photonic devices and is the first step toward ultra-high-speed Wi-Fi,” said ... » read more

System Bits: April 23


AI tool can clean up dirty data Researchers at the University of Waterloo, collaborating with colleagues at the University of Wisconsin and Stanford University, came up with HoloClean, an artificial intelligence tool to comb through dirty data and to detect information errors. “More and more machines are making decisions for us, so all our lives are touched by dirty data daily,” said Ih... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: April 8


Predicting battery life Researchers at Stanford University, MIT, and Toyota Research Institute developed a machine learning model that can predict how long a lithium-ion battery can be expected to perform. The researchers' model was trained on a few hundred million data points of batteries charging and discharging. The dataset consists of 124 commercial lithium iron phosphate/graphite cells... » read more

System Bits: April 2


Transparent film is stronger than aluminum Professor Ton Peijs of WMG at the University of Warwick and Professor Cees Bastiaansen at Queen Mary University of London came up with a new processing technique that produces a transparent polythene film said to be stronger than aluminum. The film could be used in displays, glazing, visors, and windshields, without adding significant weight. The d... » read more

Week in Review: IoT, Security, Auto


Internet of Things Apple purchased a portfolio of eight granted and pending patents that belonged to Lighthouse AI, a smart home security camera startup that ceased operations near the end of 2018. The portfolio was acquired at about the same time, according to the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office; financial terms weren’t revealed. Also not disclosed, as usual, is what Apple will do with t... » read more

The Good And Bad Of 2D Materials


Despite years of warnings about reaching the limits of silicon, particularly at leading-edge process nodes where electron mobility is limited, there still is no obvious replacement. Silicon’s decades-long dominance of the integrated circuit industry is only partly due to the material’s electronic properties. Germanium, gallium arsenide, and many other semiconductors offer superior mobili... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Feb. 26


Integrated RRAM for edge AI Researchers at CEA-Leti and Stanford University have developed the first circuit integrating multiple-bit non-volatile Resistive RAM (RRAM) with silicon computing units, as well as new memory resiliency features that provide 2.3-times the capacity of existing RRAM. The proof-of-concept chip monolithically integrates two heterogeneous technologies: 18KB of on-chip... » read more

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