IBM advances computer

IBM researchers have created what they say is the world's first logic-performing computer circuit within a single molecule. This development can lead into a new class of smaller and faster computers that consume less power than today's machines. They made a voltage inverter. It is one of three fundamental logic circuits that are the basis for today's computers; from a carbon nanotube, a tube-shaped molecule of carbon atoms 100,000 times thinner than a human hair.

IBM scientists presented this achievement at the 2001 National Meeting of the American Chemical Society in Chicago. It was the second major research development last year by IBM scientists using carbon nanotubes to make tiny electronic devices. Carbon nanotubes are the top candidate to replace silicon when current chip features just cannot be made any smaller; a physical barrier expected to occur in about 10 to 15 years. Beyond this silicon nanotube electronics may then lead to unimagined progress in computing miniaturization and power.

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