Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Advance made toward communication, computing at 'terahertz' speeds

20.07.2010
Physicists in the United States and Germany have discovered a way to use a gallium arsenide nanodevice as a signal processor at “terahertz” speeds, the first time it’s been used for this purpose and an important step forward in the new world of optical communication and computing.

Existing communications and computer architecture are increasingly being limited by the pedestrian speed of electrons moving through wires, and the future of high-speed communication and computing is in optics, experts say. The Holy Grail of results would be “wireless interconnecting,” which operates at speeds 100 to 1,000 times faster than current technology.

The new discovery, made by researchers at Oregon State University, the University of Iowa and Philipps University in Germany, has identified a way in which nanoscale devices based on gallium arsenide can respond to strong terahertz pulses for an extremely short period, controlling the electrical signal in a semiconductor. The research builds on previous findings for which OSU holds an issued patent.

“Optical communication uses the extraordinary speed of light as the signal, but right now it’s still controlled and limited by electrical signaling at the end,” said Yun-shik Lee, an associate professor in the OSU Department of Physics. “Electrons and wires are too slow, they’re a bottleneck. The future is in optical switching, in which wires are replaced by emitters and detectors that can function at terahertz speeds.”

The gallium arsenide devices used in this research can do that, the scientists discovered.

“This could be very important,” Lee said. “We were able to manipulate and observe the quantum system, basically create a strong response and the first building block of optical signal processing.”

The first applications of this type of technology, Lee said, would probably be in optical communications of almost any type – video, audio or others. The ultimate application could be quantum computing, in which computers would be orders of magnitude faster than they are now, working with a different physical and logic basis, not even using conventional transistors. Among other uses, their extraordinary speeds would make them extremely valuable for secure codes and communications.

The current use of gallium arsenide was done at the very low temperatures of liquid helium, which would not be practical for broader use. Other materials will need to be identified that can accomplish similar tasks at room temperature, the researchers said.

This research was just published in Solid State Electronics, a professional journal. It was supported by the National Science Foundation and the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute.

About the OSU College of Science: As one of the largest academic units at OSU, the College of Science has 14 departments and programs, 13 pre-professional programs, and provides the basic science courses essential to the education of every OSU student. Its faculty are international leaders in scientific research.

Yun-Shik Lee | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.oregonstate.edu

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms
17.02.2017 | Universität Konstanz

nachricht New functional principle to generate the „third harmonic“
16.02.2017 | Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V.

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Biocompatible 3-D tracking system has potential to improve robot-assisted surgery

17.02.2017 | Medical Engineering

Real-time MRI analysis powered by supercomputers

17.02.2017 | Medical Engineering

Antibiotic effective against drug-resistant bacteria in pediatric skin infections

17.02.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>