Zhenan Bao, Stanford chemical engineering professor, and her co-authors hope to solve a problem clouding the future of electronics: consumers expect silicon chips to continue getting smaller, faster and cheaper, but engineers fear that this virtuous cycle could grind to a halt.
To build more powerful chips, designers have done two things at the same time: they've shrunk transistors in size and also swung those gates open and shut faster and faster.
Graphene has the physical and electrical properties to become a next-generation semiconductor material - if researchers can figure out how to mass-produce it.
Bao and other researchers believe that ribbons of graphene, laid side-by-side, could create semiconductor circuits. Given the material's tiny dimensions and favorable electrical properties, graphene nano ribbons could create very fast chips that run on very low power, she said.
"However, as one might imagine, making something that is only one atom thick and 20 to 50 atoms wide is a significant challenge," said co-author Sokolov. To handle this challenge, the Stanford team came up with the idea of using DNA as an assembly mechanism.
According to co-author Fung Ling Yap, DNA-based fabrication method is highly scalable, offers high resolution and low manufacturing cost.
The study is published in Nature Communications.
--ANI (Posted on 09-09-2013)