Graphene Memory Arrays Are Stackable, Awesome
Graphene memory arrays in three dimensions may be possible, according to research performed at Rice University. It turns out that a tiny jolt of electricity can 'break' a strip of graphene just ten atoms thick; another jolt restores it to normal. This kind of graphene 'switch' could revolutionize data storage, making it possible to store more data in less space with less energy.
(Are graphene memory sheets possible?)
Graphene memory arrays could increase the quantity of storage in a two-dimensional array by a factor of five. Individual bits would be smaller than 10 nanometers, much smaller than the ponderous 45-nanometer circuitry in use in flash memory today. Also, the new switches could be controlled by two terminals instead of three.
Two switches is a key advance; this makes three-dimensional memory practical. Also, a graphene memory bit is essentially a mechanical device; it would consume virtually no power while keeping data intact.
What distinguishes graphene from other next-generation memories is the on-off power ratio -- the amount of juice a circuit holds when it’s on, as opposed to off. “It’s huge -- a million-to-one,” said James Tour, Rice’s Chao Professor of Chemistry as well as a professor of mechanical engineering and materials science and of computer science. “Phase-change memory, the other thing the industry is considering, runs at 10-to-1. That means the ‘off’ state holds, say, one-tenth the amount of current than the ‘on’ state.”
Electrical current tends to leak from an “off” that’s holding a charge. “That means in a 10-by-10 grid, 10 ‘offs’ would leak enough to look like they were ‘on.’ With our method, it would take a million ‘offs’ in a line to look like ‘on,’’ he said. “So this is big. It allows us to make a much larger array.”
And, in the It Just Keeps Getting Better And Better department, Tour says that graphene 'switches' are significantly faster in operation, have a longer operating lifetime, and work well from minus 75 degrees to more than 200 degrees Celcius.
SF fans may recall the Schrön Loop memory storage device, from Dan Simmons 1991 novel Hyperion; it had somewhat greater capacity (and could be implanted in a person):
"A man or woman could carry AIs or complete planetary dataspheres in a Schrön loop." (More)
From James Tour’s graphene device may make massive storage practical.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/22/2008)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
Twist Bioscience High Density Digital Data On DNA
'They tied the memory to the bloodline and that was their record!' - Barbara Humbly, 1982.
Store One Bit On One Atom
'...each individual molecule has a meaning.' - Robert Heinlein, 1951.
DataTraveler Ultimate Generation 2 Terabyte Flashdrive
'A man or woman could carry AIs or complete planetary data spheres...' - Dan Simmons, 1989.
Sandisk 1 Terabyte SD Memory Card Surfaces
'They should be Welton Fine-Grains, or they would be too bulky to ship...' - Robert Heinlein, 1973.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
A 'Genuine Nanorobotic Production Factory'
'Microscopic machinery, smaller than ants, smaller than pins, working energetically, purposefully - constructing something...'
Neuromorphic Computer Offers Non-von Neumann Architecture
Fires faster than brain at 1/10K energy.
Evorus Your Crowd-Powered Conversational Assistant
'...the DS [Daily Schedule] was suddenly transformed into a valued confidante.'
Mealworms Food Of The Future
Get your grubs on.
Alibaba's AI May Read Better Than You
'Mike ... could accept other languages and was doing technical translating - and reading endlessly.'
Musk's Boring Flamethrower
'Skeletons in tatters. Burned by a flesh gun'
Humanity Star LEO Advertisement?
'Everyone has noticed those enormous advertisements...'
Nissan ProPILOT Slippers Are Self-Parking, Autonomous
Beyond science and fiction.
Atomristors - Atomic Memristors - Using Thin Nanomaterials
'I could almost feel those little tunnel junction neuristors working, forming their own interconnections as I operated it.'
Bigelow Prepares Inflatable Lunar Hotel
'Suddenly, hitherto unheard-of sums of money became available for investment in civilian orbital stations.'
Drunk Driver Of Tesla Claims Autopilot Was In Charge
'Mr. Garden, you are in no condition to drive.'
Medical Exoskeleton From Cyberdyne Gets FDA Approval
It's been a long road for HAL-5; I started writing about it in 2005.
Fungi-Infused Concrete Repairs Itself
'I noticed that curious mottled knots were forming, indicating where the room had been strained and healed faultily.'
Shiftwear Display Shoes
'He unlaced her shoe and glanced at its readout.'
NASA SEXTANT First With X-Ray Nav In Space
'You need at least four beacons for an accurate fix.'
GM Introduces Cruise AV With No Steering Wheel
'How about the steering wheel?' ... 'I do not need one.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories