In an advance that helps pave the way for next-generation electronics and computing technologies—and possibly paper-thin gadgets —scientists with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) developed a way to chemically assemble transistors and circuits that are only a few atoms thick.
What’s more, their method yields functional structures at a scale large enough to begin thinking about real-world applications and commercial scalability.
They report their research online July 11 in the journal Nature Nanotechnology.
The scientists controlled the synthesis of a transistor in which narrow channels were etched onto conducting graphene, and a semiconducting material called a transition-metal dichalcogenide, or TMDC, was seeded in the blank channels. Both of these materials are single-layered crystals and atomically thin, so the two-part assembly yielded electronic structures that are essentially two-dimensional. In addition, the synthesis is able to cover an area a few centimeters long and a few millimeters wide.
“This is a big step toward a scalable and repeatable way to build atomically thin electronics or pack more computing power in a smaller area,” says Xiang Zhang, a senior scientist in Berkeley Lab’s Materials Sciences Division who led the study.
Zhang also holds the Ernest S. Kuh Endowed Chair at the University of California (UC) Berkeley and is a member of the Kavli Energy NanoSciences Institute at Berkeley. Other scientists who contributed to the research include Mervin Zhao, Yu Ye, Yang Xia, Hanyu Zhu, Siqi Wang, and Yuan Wang from UC Berkeley as well as Yimo Han and David Muller from Cornell University.
Their work is part of a new wave of research aimed at keeping pace with Moore’s Law, which holds that the number of transistors in an integrated circuit doubles approximately every two years. In order to keep this pace, scientists predict that integrated electronics will soon require transistors that measure less than ten nanometers in length.
Transistors are electronic switches, so they need to be able to turn on and off, which is a characteristic of semiconductors. However, at the nanometer scale, silicon transistors likely won’t be a good option. That’s because silicon is a bulk material, and as electronics made from silicon become smaller and smaller, their performance as switches dramatically decreases, which is a major roadblock for future electronics.
Researchers have looked to two-dimensional crystals that are only one molecule thick as alternative materials to keep up with Moore’s Law. These crystals aren’t subject to the constraints of silicon.
In this vein, the Berkeley Lab scientists developed a way to seed a single-layered semiconductor, in this case the TMDC molybdenum disulfide (MoS2), into channels lithographically etched within a sheet of conducting graphene. The two atomic sheets meet to form nanometer-scale junctions that enable graphene to efficiently inject current into the MoS2. These junctions make atomically thin transistors.
“This approach allows for the chemical assembly of electronic circuits, using two-dimensional materials, which show improved performance compared to using traditional metals to inject current into TMDCs,” says Mervin Zhao, a lead author and Ph.D. student in Zhang’s group at Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley.
Optical and electron microscopy images, and spectroscopic mapping, confirmed various aspects related to the successful formation and functionality of the two-dimensional transistors.
In addition, the scientists demonstrated the applicability of the structure by assembling it into the logic circuitry of an inverter. This further underscores the technology’s ability to lay the foundation for a chemically assembled atomic computer, the scientists say.
“Both of these two-dimensional crystals have been synthesized in the wafer scale in a way that is compatible with current semiconductor manufacturing. By integrating our technique with other growth systems, it’s possible that future computing can be done completely with atomically thin crystals,” says Zhao.
The Latest on: Atomically thin electronics
[google_news title=”” keyword=”Atomically thin electronics” num_posts=”10″ blurb_length=”0″ show_thumb=”left”]
via Google News
The Latest on: Atomically thin electronics
- Research advances magnetic graphene for low-power electronicson November 27, 2023 at 7:23 am
National University of Singapore (NUS) physicists have developed a concept to induce and directly quantify spin splitting in two-dimensional materials. By using this concept, they have experimentally ...
- TVS Electronics Share Priceon November 24, 2023 at 1:02 pm
TVS Electronics Ltd., incorporated in the year 1995, is a Small Cap company (having a market cap of Rs 641.94 Crore) operating in IT - Hardware sector. TVS Electronics Ltd. key Products/Revenue ...
- Magnetic graphene for low-power electronicson November 23, 2023 at 4:01 pm
Joule heating poses a significant challenge in modern electronics, especially in devices such as ... detect and manipulate the spin of electrons in atomically thin materials. It also demonstrates a ...
- IIT Delhi Researchers Innovate Highly Scratch-Resistant Glass Using Ultrathin Graphene Coatingon November 22, 2023 at 11:42 pm
A breakthrough development emerging from the laboratories of IIT Delhi showcases a pioneering method to enhance the scratch resistance of gl..|News Track ...
- How to Dry Out Your Wet Electronicson November 15, 2023 at 5:47 pm
If this has happened to you – or worse yet, if your phone has taken a brief dunk in the restroom – this tutorial shows how to quickly and thoroughly dry out your soggy electronics. Note: the following ...
- Electronics Projectson October 3, 2023 at 5:01 pm
Welcome to our blog, where we will take a deep dive into the world of OLED displays and the Raspberry Pi Pico W… ...
- Transition Metal Dichalcogenides (TMDs) – A Promising Class of 2D Materials for Advanced Technologieson June 22, 2023 at 9:56 pm
The Royal Society of Chemistry) (click on image to enlarge) Early research in 2D-TMDs has focused on their potential as a new generation of atomically thin semiconductors for functional electronics ...
- Thin-Film Electronics: Precision that Accelerateson April 12, 2021 at 9:07 am
They deliver high resolution in sizes large enough for palm and four-finger scans and yet are thin, lightweight and (semi-)transparent, so can be integrated into various electronics and intelligent ...
- Two dimensional ‘Lego’ shows new methods for creating electronicson March 7, 2019 at 12:28 am
Physicists from The University of Manchester and The University of Sheffield have discovered that when two atomically thin (two-dimensional) materials like graphene are placed on top of each other ...
- Scientists Made a Two-Dimensional Material That's Never Been Seen in Natureon October 19, 2017 at 7:46 pm
Working with atomically thin components is expected to lead to better, more energy efficient electronics. This technological capability has never been accessible before." The team didn't specify ...
via Bing News