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.
BrainEx Restores Some Activity To Severed Pig Head
'... they placed the brain in a special solution, having all the properties of Nursing the brain cells.'
Yes, But Do Astrobees Have Lasers For Lightsaber Training?
'... Ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid.'
'Young Razorbacks Before Their Katanas Grow In'
'Twin robotic arms with gleaming three-foot sword blades unfolded from the forward hydraulic assemblies...'
A New Way To Run Into Things
'He made an adjustment, pointed the tube at the wall beside Etzwane, and projected a cone of light.'
'Metallic Wood' Strong Like Titanium, Floats In Water
'A metal... light as cork and stronger than steel...'
Seabreacher, H.G. Winter's 1939 Torpoon
'Ken lay full-length in the padded body compartment, his feet resting on the controlling bars of the directional planes, hands on the torpoon's engine levers.'
Abundant Robotics Autonomous Apple Harvester Robot
'... little machines, that went from plant to plant... cutting off the ripe fruit.'
Charging An Electric Car In 2019 (Video), 1912 (Photo) And 1894 (Fiction)
'Recharge the batteries... in almost every town and village...'
Japan Uses Explosives On Asteroid
'...a tiny, rocket-powered projectile, drove towards the mysterious bulk. It hit, exploding into a cloud of incandescent vapour.'
Get Your Speeder Flying Motorcycle From Jetpack Aviation
'The flycycles were miracles of compact design.'
FLIR Black Hornet 3 Palm-sized Drone
These drones can provide situational awareness beyond visual line-of-sight capability.
Dockworkers Protest Driverless Trucks
'It resembled conventional human-operated transportation vehicles, but with one exception -- there was no driver's cabin.'
Flying Car Concept By Kash Sirinanda
'Each one consists of a hub with many tiny spokes... On the end is a squat foot, rubber tread on the bottom...'
Unfurl The Future! Huawei Mate X versus Galaxy Fold
'A paper thin polycarbon screen unfurled silently from the top of the unit and immediately grew rigid.'
Amazon Echo And Google Home Should Have Morality Software
'The Dwoskin Morality Rating-Computer could 'spot the slightest tendency to deviation' from the social norm...'
China Building Robot Wives
'Want a life-companion, a pleasant one?'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories