IBM said the transistor is six nanometers long and claims that demonstrates there's still life in the devices at this molecular level.
IBM said that further work will be needed to achieve both higher performance and the management of power density and heat dissipation. A nanometer is one billionth of a meter, and IBM said that the Consortium of International Semiconductor Companies has projected that transistors need to be smaller than nine nano by 2016 to carry on the performance curve.
IBM said that the size would allow the fabrication of devices with 100 times more transistors than is currently possible. Reducing the gate length of a transistor, the size of the switch within a transistor, increases performance and reduces their cost.
The IBM transistor reduces the thickness of silicon on the silicon-on-insulator wafers it uses, with the body of the transistor only being between four to eight nanometers thick.
The breakthrough was made by using halo implants and 248 nanometer wavelength lithography.
The firm will present more details at the International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) which starts today. µ
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