Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Jumpstarting computers with 3-D chips

25.01.2012
Integrated circuits in multiple layers are readily made and tested in EPFL lab

EPFL scientist are among the leaders in the race to develop an industry-ready prototype of a 3D chip as well as a high-performance and reliable manufacturing method.


The chip is composed of three or more processors that are stacked vertically and connected together -- resulting in increased speed and multitasking, more memory and calculating power, better functionality and wireless connectivity. Credit: EPFL / Alain Herzog

The chip is composed of three or more processors that are stacked vertically and connected together—resulting in increased speed and multitasking, more memory and calculating power, better functionality and wireless connectivity.

Developed at the Microelectronics Systems Laboratory (LSM), Director Yusuf Leblebici is unveiling these results to experts on Wednesday the 25th of January in Paris, in a keynote presentation at the 2012 Interconnection Network Architectures Workshop.

"It's the logical next step in electronics development, because it allows a large increase in terms of efficiency," says Leblebici.
Up to this point, chips could only be assembled horizontally via connections along their edges. Here, they are connected vertically by several hundred very thin copper microtubes. These wires pass through tiny openings, called Through-Silicon-Vias (TSV), made in the core of the silicon layer of each chip.

"This superposition reduces the distance between circuits, and thus considerably improves the speed of data exchange," explains LSM researcher Yuksel Temiz, who is doing his PhD thesis on the subject.

To reach this result, the team had to overcome a number of difficulties, such as the fragility of the copper connections and supports which, because they are miniaturized to such an extreme degree (about 50 micrometers in thickness), are as thin as a human hair. "In three years of work, we made and tested thousands of TSV connections, and had more than 900 functioning simultaneously," says Leblebici. "Now we have a production process that is really efficient." He adds that the laboratory has also manufactured 3D multi-core processors, connected by a TSV network.

This technology will initially be made available to a number of academic research teams for further development, before being commercialized.


VIDEO: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3z-O8rrQis
Contacts:
Yusuf Leblebici, yusuf.leblebici@epfl.ch,
tel. +41 21 693 69 51 or +41 21 693 69 55
Yuksel Temiz, yuksel.temiz@epfl.ch,
tel. +41 21 693 69 28 or +41 78 878 62 99

Sarah Perrin | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.epfl.ch

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Equipping form with function
23.06.2017 | Institute of Science and Technology Austria

nachricht Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity
23.06.2017 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quantum thermometer or optical refrigerator?

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>