Monday, May 7, 2012

Single-layer silicon that could beat graphene to market

Single-layer silicon that could beat graphene to market:

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Sebastian Anthony writes:
Numerous research groups around the world are reporting that they have created silicene, a one-atom-thick hexagonal mesh of silicon atoms — the silicon equivalent of graphene.
Since its discovery a few years ago, you will have heard a lot about graphene, especially with regard to its truly wondrous electrical properties. Graphene is the most conductive material in the known universe, and IBM has shown that graphene transistors could be become the basis of transistors (and computers) that operate in the hundreds-of-gigahertz or terahertz (THz) range. There’s only one problem: Graphene isn’t really a semiconductor in the silicon/computer chip sense of the word. Unlike silicon (or germanium), graphene doesn’t have a bandgap, which makes it very hard to actually build a switching device — such as a transistor — out of it. Researchers have had some luck in introducing a bandgap, but graphene is still a long way away from being used in current silicon processes.
Single-layer silicon that could beat graphene to market - [Link]

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