Manufacturing Bits: Aug. 21


World’s smallest transistor The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) has developed what researchers say is the world’s smallest transistor. Researchers have devised a single-atom transistor. The transistor switches an electrical current via a single atom, which resides in a gel electrolyte. The device also works at room temperature. While others have developed single-atom transist... » read more

Too Many, Too Few Rare Earths


A team from Japan recently made a major discovery—they found massive deposits of rare earths on the ocean floor off the coast of Japan. The team of Waseda University, the University of Tokyo and the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) found a deposit that equates to 16 million tons of rare earths. Rare earths are a group of critical materials used in various ele... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Dec. 12


Sunny days slow 5G 5G networks promise a world of fast wireless data speeds and connected everything.  However, researchers at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and King Saud University found that hot, sunny weather could degrade 5G cellular transmissions by more than 15%. The researchers focused on how solar radio emissions would affect the unlicensed 60 GHz bands, part of the millimet... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Sept. 26


Long-range communication Researchers at the University of Washington developed devices that run on almost zero power can transmit data across distances of up to 2.8 kilometers. The long-range backscatter system, which uses reflected radio signals to transmit data at extremely low power, achieved reliable coverage throughout 4800-square-foot house, an office area covering 41 rooms and a one-acr... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: July 26


Jumping films Riken and the University of Tokyo have developed a tiny autonomous actuator. The actuator, which is based on a special material, can automatically curl up or straighten out when exposed to ambient humidity. And in certain conditions, the film can even jump into the air by itself. A video can be seen here. Researchers placed a material called guanidinium carbonate into a hig... » read more

System Bits: March 8


Living, breathing supercomputers Adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the substance that provides energy to all the cells in the human body, may also be able to power the next generation of supercomputers, according to McGill University researchers. The team has described a model of a biological computer that they have created that is able to process information very quickly and accurately using p... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Feb. 2


Single electron transistors A group coordinated by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) is setting out on a four year program to develop single electron transistors fully compatible with CMOS technology and capable of room temperature operation. The single electron transistor (SET) switches electricity by means of a single electron. The SET is based on a quantum dot (consisting... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Jan. 12


World’s smallest magnet The University of Tokyo has developed what researchers claim is the world's smallest nano-magnet. The nano-size ferrite magnet consists of iron oxide. With the material, researches devised a 7.5nm structure with magnetic properties. [caption id="attachment_24751" align="alignleft" width="300"] Charting the world's smallest magnet (Source: Shin-ichi Ohkoshi)[/ca... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Dec. 8


Reducing transistor switching power One of the great challenges in electronics has been to reduce power consumption during transistor switching operation. However, engineers at University of California, Santa Barbara, and Rice University demonstrated a new transistor that switches at only 0.1 volts and reduces power dissipation by over 90% compared to state-of-the-art MOSFETs. "The steepn... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: July 14


Photo-doping semiconductors Scientists at Michigan State University found that by shooting an ultrafast laser pulse into a semiconducting material, its properties would change as if it had been chemically doped, in a process known as photo-doping. "The material we studied is an unconventional semiconductor made of alternating atomically thin layers of metals and insulators," said Chong-Yu... » read more

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