07th Sep2011

3M and IBM Plan to Develop Adhesives for 3D Semiconductors

by Skibs

3M and IBM announced their joint plan to develop new types of adhesives which can be used to create truly three-dimensional semiconductors. The adhesive would be applied between different chips, allowing a stack of up to 100 chips to operate as a single micro-processor. The research would offer greatly improved heat conduction to the resulting brick of silicon, superseding current 3D packaging technology as a result.

“Today’s chips, including those containing ‘3D’ transistors, are in fact 2D chips that are still very flat structures,” said Bernard Meyerson, VP of Research at IBM. “Our scientists are aiming to develop materials that will allow us to package tremendous amounts of computing power into a new form factor – a silicon ‘skyscraper.’ We believe we can advance the state-of-art in packaging, and create a new class of semiconductors that offer more speed and capabilities while they keep power usage low — key requirements for many manufacturers, especially for makers of tablets and smartphones.”

[Source: IBM]

15th Aug2011

Proposed Battery-less Computing with Spintronics and Straintronics

by Skibs

Researchers from the Virginia Commonwealth University detailed a circuit design whose energy requirements were so low, no battery would be required. This new scheme combines spintronics and straintronics to achieve a processor which could operate on environmental energy alone.

Spintronics are used to store binary information with electrons, where an electron spinning one way constitutes as ‘0’ and the opposite direction a ‘1’. From here, straintronics are used to flip the direction of an electron’s spin with a miniscule amount of dissipated energy. Each switch could be performed with as little as 0.4 attojoules (4E-19 joules).

[Source: http://www.physorg.com/news/2011-08-strain-enable-ultra-low-energy.html]