back to article Silicon nanowires: The Next Big Thing™ in chip design

The next step in transistor architecture will likely be silicon nanowires – extremely thin silicon wires that will form the transistor's chanel, surrounded on all sides by a wrap-around silicon oxide, high-K metal gate. "It's the ultimate fully-depleted device," the director of IBM's Semiconductor Research & Development Center, …

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Hot?

So if transistors in chips are going to be built up into 3D blocks rather than the current planar (2D) layout, I can certainly see how this will help processing power - but won't the big solid blocks of transistors get very hot? We already have enough trouble cooling 2D chips. Maybe the 3D chips will need channels for cooling liquid.

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Re: Hot?

the heat in a chip is generated mostly by lost voltage / electrons converted to heat .. ie ...

less voltage loss means lower voltage can be used, and less heat generated .. besides ..

what is being talked about here is not multi-layered "3D" chips , and even 2D layouts have thickness of components .. hence are 3 dimensional .. and likely thicker, at the current 28-32 nanometer processes, than these 3 nanometer cylindrical wires

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Relative sizes .....

With a 5-8 nm diameter 'pipe', how does the physical size compare to the lattice size of silicon? I'm wondering about quantum and lattice edge effects starting to affect the behaviour.

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Meh

We've come a *long* way from the self-aligned gate.

<sigh>

As for lattice and edge effects keep in mind that crystal lattice spacings used to be measured in Angstroms or 0.1 nm. So you're looking at a chunk of crystal about 50 atoms wide, which *should* be enough for it to viewed as a *very* small piece of a large crystal, rather than a small group of atoms.

Of course as the thing you need to make gets smaller it might just be simpler to build it *up* 1 atom at a time....

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Facepalm

"....and it can't get better than that."

Presumably Fate now has his name on its "to do" list.

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WTF?

depleted...

So depleted uranium is a (mostly) spent heat source, but "depleted silicon" refers only to it's valance electrons? Do they just make this jargon up as they go along?

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Go

Re: depleted...

Nooo, first you've got to submit your jargon plan to the confusion board who ratify it against the the discombobulation strategy and sign it off to the committee for cross-field screw-up.

Only then can you define the words that allow you to proceed within your discrete speciality.

After all, we all love our shibbolethic neologisms don't we?

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