US scientist have announced "a critical new breakthrough" in semiconductor spin-wave research that promises to pave the way for next-generation fast nano-scale transistors.
UCLA Engineering Adjunct Professor Mary Mehrnoosh Eshaghian-Wilner, researcher Alexander Khitun and Professor Kang Wang have created three nano-scale computational architectures using a technology called "spin-wave buses" as the mechanism for interconnection.
The researchers explained that three nano-scale architectures are not only power efficient, but possess a high degree of interconnectivity.
"Progress in the miniaturisation of semiconductor electronic devices has meant that chip features have become nano-scale," said Professor Wang.
"Today's current devices, which are based on complementary metal oxide semiconductor [CMOS] standards, cannot get much smaller and still function properly and effectively. CMOS continues to face increasing power and cost challenges."
Professor Wang explained that, in contrast to traditional information processing technology devices that simply move electric charges around while ignoring the extra spin that tags along for the ride, spin-wave buses put the extra motion to work transferring data or power between computer components.
Information is encoded directly into the phase of the spin waves. Unlike a point-to-point connection, a 'bus' can logically connect several peripherals.
The result is a reduction in power consumption, less heat and, ultimately, the ability to make components much smaller as no physical wires are used to send the data.
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