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Nanotechnologies for Supercomputers 28.09.2015

Nanotechnologies for Supercomputers

St Petersburg physicists discovered a way to increase performance of modern computers. A possibility of creation of an optical substitute for a traditional semiconductor transistor from a single silicic nano-particle is already experimentally proven.

Experts claim that performance of computers where data is transmitted via electrons is generally limited by transistor switch speed, about 0.1-1 nanosecond (10-9 of a second). It is estimated that in optical computers signals transmitted via photons will carry way more data than traditional electronic signals. This poses the challenge of developing a super-fast optical transistor, a miniature device that will be able to control working optical signal using external controlling signal in a matter of picoseconds (10-12 of a second).

The innovators behind the concept, experts from the ITMO University together with scientists from the Lebedev Physical Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences and St Petersburg Academic University, are currently developing a prototype of an ultrasensitive transistor based on a single silicic nano-particle. During their research it was discovered that these particles' properties can be drastically altered with high-powered ultra-short laser impulses. Experts say that results of this research may later be used for developing optical computers, where transistors will have to be ultra-compact and extremely fast.

 


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