Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Graphene applications in electronics and photonics

02.11.2011
Graphene, which is composed of a one-atom-thick layer of carbon atoms in a honeycomb-like lattice (like atomic-scale chicken wire), is the world's thinnest material – and one of the hardest and strongest. Indeed, the past few years have seen an explosion of research into the properties and potential applications of graphene, which has been touted as a superior alternative to silicon.

Because graphene is a two-dimensional material, "all of it is an exposed surface," says physical chemist Phaedon Avouris, manager of the Nanometer Scale Science and Technology division at IBM's T.J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, N.Y.

"While graphene has a number of extremely useful properties, including very fast electron mobility, high mechanical strength, and excellent thermal conductivity, the interactions of graphene with its environment – for example, with the substrate it is placed on, the ambient environment, or other materials in a device structure – can drastically affect and change its intrinsic properties."

"Our interest is to understand the properties of this new material under conditions that are present in actual technology and apply this knowledge to design, fabricate, and test graphene-based electronic and optoelectronic devices and circuits," says Avouris, who will present new experimental results on the use of graphene in fast electronics and photonics at the AVS meeting in Nashville, Tenn., held Oct. 30 – Nov. 4. He will also discuss what still needs to be done to translate these applications into commercial products.

Avouris, an IBM Fellow, has been involved in nanotechnology research for 25 years, and has spent the last 15 years studying the properties and applications of carbon nanotubes, a close relative of graphene. "So it was natural that when graphene was isolated in 2004, I turned my attention to it. With the help of funding from DARPA, we started a focused effort on graphene electronics," he says.

Unlike conventional semiconductors like silicon and gallium arsenide, which are currently used in electronics, graphene does not have a band-gap – the energy difference between a material's non-conductive and conductive state. "This makes it unsuitable for building digital switches, which require the ability to switch the current off completely," Avouris says. "However," he adds, "the excellent electrical properties of graphene, such as its high electron mobility coupled with modest current modulation, make it very appropriate for very fast (high-frequency) analog electronics," which are used in wireless communications, radar, security systems, imaging, and other applications.

"We already have demonstrated high-frequency graphene transistors – greater than 200 gigahertz – and simple electronic circuits such as frequency mixers," says Avouris, "and we have also demonstrated very fast photodetectors and have used them to detect optical data streams."

In the future, graphene researchers need to improve the quality of synthetic graphene and to study its properties under conditions relevant to technology, says Avouris, who is "very optimistic" about the future of graphene in both electronics and photonics and anticipates the development of additional new applications.

The AVS 58th International Symposium & Exhibition will be held Oct. 30 – Nov. 4 at the Nashville Convention Center.

Presentation NS-WeM-4, "Graphene-based Electronics and Optoelectronics," is at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 2.

USEFUL LINKS:

Main meeting website: http://www2.avs.org/symposium/AVS58/pages/greetings.html

Technical Program: http://www2.avs.org/symposium

Catherine Meyers | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.aip.org

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Thin films from Braunschweig on the way to Mercury
19.10.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Schicht- und Oberflächentechnik IST

nachricht Extremely close look at electron advances frontiers in particle physics
19.10.2018 | National Science Foundation

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: Goodbye, silicon? On the way to new electronic materials with metal-organic networks

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Mainz (Germany) together with scientists from Dresden, Leipzig, Sofia (Bulgaria) and Madrid (Spain) have now developed and characterized a novel, metal-organic material which displays electrical properties mimicking those of highly crystalline silicon. The material which can easily be fabricated at room temperature could serve as a replacement for expensive conventional inorganic materials used in optoelectronics.

Silicon, a so called semiconductor, is currently widely employed for the development of components such as solar cells, LEDs or computer chips. High purity...

Im Focus: Storage & Transport of highly volatile Gases made safer & cheaper by the use of “Kinetic Trapping"

Augsburg chemists present a new technology for compressing, storing and transporting highly volatile gases in porous frameworks/New prospects for gas-powered vehicles

Storage of highly volatile gases has always been a major technological challenge, not least for use in the automotive sector, for, for example, methane or...

Im Focus: Disrupting crystalline order to restore superfluidity

When we put water in a freezer, water molecules crystallize and form ice. This change from one phase of matter to another is called a phase transition. While this transition, and countless others that occur in nature, typically takes place at the same fixed conditions, such as the freezing point, one can ask how it can be influenced in a controlled way.

We are all familiar with such control of the freezing transition, as it is an essential ingredient in the art of making a sorbet or a slushy. To make a cold...

Im Focus: Micro energy harvesters for the Internet of Things

Fraunhofer IWS Dresden scientists print electronic layers with polymer ink

Thin organic layers provide machines and equipment with new functions. They enable, for example, tiny energy recuperators. In future, these will be installed...

Im Focus: Dynamik einzelner Proteine

Neue Messmethode erlaubt es Forschenden, die Bewegung von Molekülen lange und genau zu verfolgen

Das Zusammenspiel aus Struktur und Dynamik bestimmt die Funktion von Proteinen, den molekularen Werkzeugen der Zelle. Durch Fortschritte in der...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Conference to pave the way for new therapies

17.10.2018 | Event News

Berlin5GWeek: Private industrial networks and temporary 5G connectivity islands

16.10.2018 | Event News

5th International Conference on Cellular Materials (CellMAT), Scientific Programme online

02.10.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Nanocages in the lab and in the computer: how DNA-based dendrimers transport nanoparticles

19.10.2018 | Life Sciences

Thin films from Braunschweig on the way to Mercury

19.10.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

App-App-Hooray! - Innovative Kits for AR Applications

19.10.2018 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>