Ohio scientists create new spintronics device

Ohio scientists create new spintronics device

Summary: Researchers at Ohio State University have built a plastic computer memory device that stores and reads data using the spin of electrons (spintronics). The team built the device to test a new hybrid organic/magnetic polymer semiconductor material - vanadium tetracyanoethanide.

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TOPICS: Graphene
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Researchers at Ohio State University have built a plastic computer memory device that stores and reads data using the spin of electrons (spintronics). The team built the device to test a new hybrid organic/magnetic polymer semiconductor material - vanadium tetracyanoethanide.

The researchers layered the new material on a traditional metallic ferromagnet. They managed to store and retrieve data on the device by altering the spins of the electrons with a magnetic field.

In a letter to Nature Materials, the researchers say the work should act as a bridge between today's computers and the all-polymer semiconductor devices of the future.

Researcher Arthur Epstein says that spintronics will solve many of the problems facing computer designers today. It boosts possible data storage density, runs on less poser, and could one day mean all-plastic devices.

"Spintronics is often just seen as a way to get more information out of an electron, but really it’s about moving to the next generation of electronics," he said.

Topic: Graphene

Lucy Sherriff

About Lucy Sherriff

Lucy Sherriff is a journalist, science geek and general liker of all things techie and clever. In a previous life she put her physics degree to moderately good use by writing about science for that other tech website, The Register. After a bit of a break, it seemed like a good time to start blogging about weird quantum stuff for ZDNet. And so here we are.

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4 comments
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  • Does this mean really tough computers?
    roger andre
  • I think it means really cheap computers. IE: made of plastic. :)

    Really, I think it just means, that Moore's Law remains alive and well.

    Expect persistent memory to continue getting bigger cheaper and faster.

    Just, eventually, expect it to stop being Flash ROM based.
    edaaa1
  • Tough computers, cheap computers, possibly even flexible computers, I guess.
    Lucy Sherriff
  • It's all about the vanadium tetracyanoethanide... the more exotic compounds we get to work as electronic components, the wider the range of possibilities for a breakthrough technology. There are hundreds of research projects along these lines, though, and the chances of any one making much of a difference in itself are slim - but some will.
    rupert.goodwins9