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IBM makes nano chip breakthrough

Nano nano says Mork

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Updated IBM has claimed a breakthrough in producing smaller processors based on nanotechnology. Nanoelectronics isn't new, but IBM's Thomas J Watson Lab says the new research - it's actually a process improvement - makes more precise and reliable placement of transistors based on carbon nanotubes, rather than silicon possible.

Specifically, the researchers' breakthrough is in exploiting characteristics of what's called the 'van der Waals' interaction - the effect between a Nanotube and the surface on which it rests - to manipulate the tubes into useful shapes.

IBM hopes to have the technology ready where it could be adopted for production in three years, although Professor Chris Wilkinson of Glasgow's Nanoelectronics Research Centre at the University of Glasgow says processors are 12 to 15 years away.

IBM has a basic walkthrough here, and a much more detailed page here. IBM has also updated its page of nanotechnology links here, which have been fixed since our whinge earlier today. Nice work, gentlemen. ®

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