Scientists hear 'white graphene' bell toll for silicon circuits

Scientists hear 'white graphene' bell toll for silicon circuits

Summary: Researchers at Rice University's Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science have successfully created single-atom sheets of an insulator: hexagonal Boron Nitride (h-BN).The breakthrough could help graphene kick silicon back into the 20th century, paving the way for nanoscale field-effect transistors, quantum capacitors or biosensors.

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TOPICS: Graphene
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Researchers at Rice University's Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science have successfully created single-atom sheets of an insulator: hexagonal Boron Nitride (h-BN).

The breakthrough could help graphene kick silicon back into the 20th century, paving the way for nanoscale field-effect transistors, quantum capacitors or biosensors.

The used vapour deposition to deposit a layer of h-BN between one and five atoms thick onto a copper substrate. It can then be tranferred to other materials.

More in the announcement here.

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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  • "Excitement, adventure & really wild things" by the sound of it.

    What exactly is a nanoscale field-effect transistor?
    AndyPagin-3879e
  • A field effect transistor (FET) is one where an incoming voltage creates an electric field that then makes a much bigger change in a current flowing through the transistor - in digital circuits, this normally means they switch the bigger current on and off according to the level of the incoming voltage.

    Just about all modern memories and processors are made from FETs, because they consume very little power compared to other kinds of transistors (which do have their uses elsewhere).

    A nanoscale FET is just a very small FET! You get lots to the pound...
    rupert.goodwins@...
  • Back to school for you Rupert m'boy! You're mixing up FETs with bipolar transistors.

    In the latter, output current is proportional to input current. In a FET output current is proportional to input voltage. In a perfect device there is no input current at all.

    Incidentally, did you know that this website carries three hidden web bug/trackers. Ghostery does, and so do I now. I will in future make sure I never visit this site while any other browser page is open. I will also close and restart the browser before visiting any other website. I am extremely hostile to people stalking me :(
    Tezzer-5cae2
  • Tezzer Better Privacy plugin for ff, works a treat.
    CA-aba1d