Saturday, December 9th 2006
MIT researchers estimate that in roughly 10 to 15 years, we will hit a wall when it comes to increasing the performance of silicon. And so MIT got funding from Intel and began designing the next transistor material. Indium gallium arsenide, or InGaAs, is so far a very promising candidate. It moves electrons several times faster then silicon, does so in a 60nm transistor, and at a much lower voltage (.5 volts). Such promising material is much more fragile then silicon, which may cause problems during manufacturing. Intel, one of the sponsors of the project, is absolutely thrilled with the current results of the project.
The 60-nanometer InGaAs quantum-well transistor demonstrated by Professor del Alamo's group shows some exciting results at low supply voltage (e.g. 0.5 volts) and is a very important research milestone.MIT will show off what it has at the IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting on December 11. MIT predicts that it will have working transistor prototypes using the new technology in 2 years.CNET