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Circuits Better with Purer Nanotubes

CowboyNeal posted more than 9 years ago | from the now-that's-good-nanotube dept.

Technology 113

Mark_Uplanguage writes "PhysicsWeb has an article on improving techniques for the use of carbon nanotubes in electronic circuits. From the article, 'Physicists in the US have developed a new method for making electronic circuits with carbon nanotubes. The technique involves dipping semiconductor chips into a purified solution of nanotubes, rather than the conventional method of growing the nanotubes directly onto the chips. The resulting devices are much better than those produced by other approaches.'"

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Tubes (1)

bigmauler (905356) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248385)

Nano computing here we come!

Re:Tubes (1)

NeedleSurfer (768029) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248777)

Not really sadly, that's what I thought at first but it seems it's just about using the nanotube electrical properties. The chip is the same size but the conductive element will be nanotubes, which is still a great thing since it offers no resistance (almost) to electrical current. Obvisouly the purpose of their research is further miniaturization but as of now, in this research, they still work with conventionnal size chips.

Re:Tubes (1)

mink (266117) | more than 9 years ago | (#13252211)

Less resistance means runs cooler right?

That's a neat graphic in the article... (3, Interesting)

Adult film producer (866485) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248386)

what the hell does it mean though ?

http://physicsweb.org/objects/news/9/8/2/050802.jp g [physicsweb.org]

Re:That's a neat graphic in the article... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248550)

It is modeled after the female reproductive system, with the nanotubes representing the fallopian tubes, and the monitor representing the vagina.

Re:That's a neat graphic in the article... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248553)

Zorro is ruling the nanoworld!

I, for one, welcome our new nanolord Zorro!

Re:That's a neat graphic in the article... (1)

aug24 (38229) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248663)

Don't drive across bridge two unless you're in Chitty-chitty-bang-bang?

J.

Re:That's a neat graphic in the article... (1)

GotenXiao (863190) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249389)

Read the caption, it tells you.

Re:That's a neat graphic in the article... (1)

westcoaster004 (893514) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249471)

The image in the article is a composite of a Scanning Tunnelling Microscopy (STM) [wikipedia.org] image and the cut-out area where they show a computer model showing the structure of the carbon nanotube [wikipedia.org] as it lays on the semiconductor surface. Image [physicsweb.org]

Re:That's a neat graphic in the article... (1)

the way, what're you (591901) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249627)

looks like some fucked up Bridges of Königsberg variation. good luck

Re:That's a neat graphic in the article... (1)

solodex2151 (700977) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249751)

It's a representation of how one might use carbon nanotubes in a circuit. Since they have mobilities far higher than inorganic material (i.e. copper and gold) they are nice to use as line. The greyish lines on single nanotubes functioning as lines (yes a single molecule). The orangish stuff on the side is represented by a film, most likely spin casted, that is either a conducting polymer like poly-aninline or poly-thiophine or a silver/gold based film. The technique for depositing would be similar to the photo lithography techniques currently used for inorganics although theorectially the smallest gate junction could be 10x smaller. On another note, multi-walled nanotubes (think a bunch of nanotubes glued together at various angles) make excellent t-junctions and node and will probably be used in the future.

I shall call it... (1)

cerberus4696 (765520) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248392)

...the Chipsicle!

In Layman's Terms (1, Funny)

CleverNickedName (644160) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248393)

The technique involves dipping semiconductor chips into a purified solution of nanotubes, rather than the conventional method of growing the nanotubes directly onto the chips. The resulting devices are much better than those produced by other approaches.

It is like dunking your doughnut in coffee instead of waiting for the doughnut to naturally produce its own coffee flavour.
The more you know.

More like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248530)

dunking your doughnut in coffee instead of injecting the coffee to the doughnut

What they don't discuss (2, Informative)

2.7182 (819680) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248395)

That there are quantum mechanical problems with having the tubes alligned and getting a good signal through them.

Re:What they don't discuss (1)

Ravatar (891374) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248404)

Couldn't that be achieved through magnetics?

Re:What they don't discuss (1)

jacksonj04 (800021) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249105)

Does quantum cause that much interference at carbon nanotube scales?

Re:What they don't discuss (1)

hazah (807503) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249742)

Quantum reffers to the state of matter of carbon nanotubes, not another form of matter that interacts with them.

Re:What they don't discuss (1)

slo_learner (729232) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249789)

That's not a very elaborate elaboration.

Re:What they don't discuss (1)

hazah (807503) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249972)

k... well, where do I start? Quantum physics are the physics that describe interactions between subatomic particles. Classical physics break down on that level. For example, given 2 electrons in a confined space, if you record where they are at one point of time, and then another, you wouldn't know which electron's which the second time. That is, you couldn't follow their path, and thus tell them apart or where they'll end up based on classical physics.

What we do know, however, about the electron, is that it posses a "quantum state". If you've ever programmed, you can think of it as "properties" of a partical. For instance, one of those properties is that an electron carries a charge of -1.

What it comes down to then is a choice of state. Given the right Quantum state, there shouldn't be interference with how things work out. However, the interference itself, if existed, wouldn't be "quantum interference", it would be structural. Hope it helps.

Re:What they don't discuss (1)

k98sven (324383) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249739)

That there are quantum mechanical problems with having the tubes alligned and getting a good signal through them.

Could you elaborate on that?

Any More? (5, Interesting)

irokie (697424) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248398)

does any one have a link to an article that's more than just a blurb? What are the applications? How long before we can built Logic out of these chips? According to TFA, all they've managed to create so far is an FET...

Re:Any More? (1)

Epistax (544591) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249370)

ANFET? And here I am using PFET and NFET like a sucker.

Re:Any More? (1)

solodex2151 (700977) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249804)

Expect organic electronics to start replacing inorganic (i.e. silicon) quite soon. OLED displays are already on the market. Polymer solar cells that look like a big clear plastic tarp uses a special nanotube called a "buckeyball" (aka C60 carbon nanotube, buckministerfullerene, fullerene, etc.) to help with the light conversion process. The technology is here and now. Manufacturing issues are what's holding everything up. That, and the fact that organic semiconductors are p type semiconductors only (there is no n type).

Re:Any More? (1)

sameerdesai (654894) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250051)

There have been many application unfortunately they haven't reached a stage of commercial production on a large scale. In my graduate study, I did a project on Carbon Nanotubes and applications. Here is a site that shows applications of nanotubes in animation.

http://www.photon.t.u-tokyo.ac.jp/~maruyama/agalle ry/agallery.html [u-tokyo.ac.jp]

imagine... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248403)

Just imagine a beowulf cluster of those carbon nanotubes, forming a beowulf cluster of microchips, inside a beowulf cluster of...

Quantum scale ... (1)

WoodieR (860635) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248409)

computing is just around the corner ... of course, it'll take 30 or mroe years to get to us mere mortals, but you can bet the US military / industrial complex will have this soon, if they do not already possess them ...

Re:Quantum scale ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248431)

Dunno why you think so. If FETs made out of nanotubes were reliable and the process to make them available, I know the company I work for would use them.

Re:Quantum scale ... (2, Informative)

hcdejong (561314) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248593)

Right. Just like the US military / industrial complex had been using silicon chips for 30 years before the Altair, or vacuum tube computers 30 years before the first commercial computer.

FYI, the timeline:
1943: Colossus
1946: ENIAC
1958: first IC
1971: first CPU
1975: Altair

Re:Quantum scale ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248676)

Uh, don't you think quantum scale computing has been around since the transistor?

Re:Quantum scale ... (1)

Tacky the Penguin (553526) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250759)

of course, it'll take 30 or mroe years to get to us mere mortals

That's not necessarily true. If they can make $$$ by mass-marketing it to us 'mere mortals', they'll do it.

By way of example, look at the sophisticated microprocessors that are marketed to us 'mere mortals'.

It's all about profit.

Re:Quantum scale ... (2, Insightful)

budgenator (254554) | more than 9 years ago | (#13251008)

Man the military-industrial complex is SO 1960's, now it's the PLM, Political, Legal, Media, complex that we worry about. All hail the Senator from Disney, and Mickey Mouse's perpetual copyright protection!

A solution of nanotubes? No such beast! (2, Insightful)

bigsteve@dstc (140392) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248410)

The article says it is a solution containing nanotubes, not a solution of nanotubes.

And if the nanotubes were in solution, they wouldn't be nanotubes any more.

Re:A solution of nanotubes? No such beast! (2, Informative)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248437)

OK, they used the wrong word. They should have said "a suspension containing nanotubes".

Re:A solution of nanotubes? No such beast! (3, Informative)

aug24 (38229) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248641)

if the nanotubes were in solution, they wouldn't be nanotubes any more.

Not so. You can have macromolecules is solution without destroying them. For example, fullerene dissolves in toluene. The molecules don't break up, but they acquire a coating of toluene molecules on the surface which means that they act as part of the liquid instead of a solid. When the toluene is evaporated, the buckys are fine.

In fact, there's a good chance these nanotubes are bucky-derived so they might even be in a toluene solution in TFA (which I haven't read cos I don't care about chip manufacture, I was just reading for the '+5 Funny's).

J.

are there any practical nanotube applications (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248433)

that are actually on the market right now ?
all i ever see are "may" or "might" or "could"
lots of hype/vapour but i havent heard or seen any applications of this technology that have made it to market

perhaps they will be released with Duke Nukem Forever as an addon

Re:are there any practical nanotube applications (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13249615)

yeah, it is pretty usefull for screen display. Better resolution and less current consumption

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20050510-4887 .html [arstechnica.com]

Re:are there any practical nanotube applications (1)

Intron (870560) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249713)

Nothing like rushing into something before its been fully studied [sciencenews.org] . Buckyballs and nanotubes both present unknown amounts of harm to the environment and to the health of animal life. This is a case where we might want to figure out disposal methods first, because there is evidence that these substances can accumulate in certain environments.

Interesting Chips Debate (5, Funny)

fruey (563914) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248434)

The technique involves dipping your chips into a purified solution of ketchup, rather than the conventional method of throwing the ketchup directly onto the chips.

So, are you a dipper or do you cover them with sauce first? Science have proved that the dippers are using a superior technique...

chips: n. [British] Fried potatoes cut into thick rectangular strips. see fries [American].

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248470)

Ketchup goes on fries, malt vinegar goes on chips.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (2, Informative)

wed128 (722152) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248482)

Actually in NJ, Malt Vinegar goes on Fries as well...

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

sjwaste (780063) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248531)

And malt liquor goes quite well with them.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

wed128 (722152) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248603)

Who are you kidding? Malt liquor goes with anything!

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248489)

No no no! non-brewed condiment goes on chips.
Mmmmmmm.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13249780)

*Mayonnaise* goes on fries. But chips do indeed get vinegar.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

lisaparratt (752068) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248490)

Worht noting that your average British Chip Shop Chip has a cross sectional area approximately 4 times larger than the average American Burger Restaurant Fry.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249800)

has a cross sectional area approximately 4 times larger than the average American Burger Restaurant Fry

      It's called hyperthreading...

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 9 years ago | (#13251273)

We used to call them shoe-string fries, back when regular fries were regular sized like what your getting now, probably has something to do with McD's over engineering every aspect of food to cut cost and increase production. Great now I'm craving fish & chip, hafta make a trip to Canada I suppose.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

Zen Punk (785385) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248529)

Actually, what are referred to as chips in Britain aren't really what we'd call fries over here. They're much too thick. I've always heard them referred to as "JoJos" or potato wedges.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

Xrikcus (207545) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248597)

Ah,but if you asked for Potato Wedges in the UK you'd get something even bigger than chips, usually with the skin still on.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (2, Informative)

sjwaste (780063) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248542)

They're a lot like what we call "Steak Fries" here in the US. I generally prefer them to the thin fast-food kind, but done properly, they're all good.

Remember everyone, don't buy those frozen par-cooked ones. Cut 'em fresh, blanch them in 250-275 degree oil, drain, then fry at a higher temp (365 works for me). Oh yeah, and if you want 'em REAL good, fry them in some sort of animal fat. Otherwise use Peanut Oil and only that.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

Xrikcus (207545) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248615)

You prefer them blanched in oil? Too greasy that way. Better to boil them until really soft and then fry at a very high temp. Or would they not count as fries to you then, being mostly boiled? :)

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13249618)

Actually the other methodes produces less greasy fries over cooking, due to the way it is dried.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

Xrikcus (207545) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250498)

Pardon? That made no sense to me at all...

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

sjwaste (780063) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250515)

Blanched properly, they won't soak up much if any oil at all. As long as there's moisture coming out at a decent rate (steam), it's hard for oil to get in. The idea is to blanch them until they're slightly tender, but not cooked all the way through. Then you drain them for 10-15 mins, which lets most of the surface oil drip off. Then you fry again at a high temp until golden-brown, probably only a few minutes since you blanched. If you blanch too long, you'll have soggy fries from the oil. Too little and they'll be undercooked.

The best recipe for fries I've found is actually in Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles cookbook. Check that out, most bookstores have it.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

Xrikcus (207545) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250771)

hmm, makes sense. My grandmother always used to use oil totally and they were horrible... too low a temp for too long, my approach just means you cook the potato through, and just fry it hot for taste and texture. I may give that a go though.

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13249940)

Steak fries are also known as mojos or wedges.

Way OT question for sjwaste about french fries (1)

Bob-o-Matic! (620698) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250549)

I have been trying the two step frying method, but haven't achieved satisfactory results. Could you share more detail about the first frying session, such as how long for what mass of fries in what volume of oil, what do you do with the fries immediately after? Also, do you have a second pot of oil kept at the higher temperature, or do you work with one pot?

    I tend to cook around 3 pounds of potatoes at a time in small batches, using a kitchenaid french fry slicer [shop.com] (sorry- can't find it on kitchenaid.com) to keep the fries uniform. Since I have been using one pot-- actually have moved to using a wok with a bit over 2 liters of oil, I fry at about 300F until the fries float, put them on a cooling rack to drain, and continue until all fries have been fried at 300F and drained. I then fry them at about 360F again in small batches until they float/look done, drain, and season. Unfortunately they are greasy. Could you perhaps give me some pointers?

ps-- for reference, I use good russet potatoes, scrubbed and cut with skins on, and soak in water overnight, and drained with salad spinner before frying. Yes, I am willing to take extra steps to achieve extraordinary results. I haven't had homemade fries as good as those made at restuarants, county fairs, etc, but I know I can do as well or better. And steak fries make my wife happy, which is better for all of us, I think ;)

Thanks!

Bob

Re:Way OT question for sjwaste about french fries (1)

sjwaste (780063) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250711)

I use one pot, literally a pot with oil in it and a thermometer. I would suggest trying to blanch at 260 or so, and not until they float, because at that point they're cooked. You want to get them slightly translucent then pull them out of the oil. Always do small batches, then allow to drain thoroughly (about 10 mins) on a wire rack (or paper towels if you don't have a rack). Then crank the oil to about 375 and fry until golden brown.

I guess what's going wrong for you is that you're blanching at too high a temp and for too long, really. If you're doing a lot of fries, have two pots, one at 265, one at 375, but make sure that your blanched fries do get to drain for about 10 mins.

In summary:

Blanch at 265 until slightly translucent Drain for 10 mins Fry at 375 until golden

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (2, Funny)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248548)

So, are you a dipper or do you cover them with sauce first?

      Covering your chips in sauce is a very useful way to prevent chip theft when you live with someone who is allergic to tomatoes...

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (2, Funny)

youknowmewell (754551) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248567)

Stop it, you're making me hungry you insensitive clod!!!

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

kwoff (516741) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249603)

chips: n. [British] Fried potatoes cut into thick rectangular strips. see fries [American].

Or "potatoes cut into thick rectangular strips and then fried". Cutting fried potatoes to make french fries would be kind of silly. :) (Incidentally, in French you use the same word as Americans do for chips, though it's pronounced like "sheeps". They also say "frites" (or "pommes frites"), which means the same thing as "fries" (or "frieds", I guess).)

Re:Interesting Chips Debate (1)

fruey (563914) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250066)

Tout à fait, merci pour le détail.

Good point about the poor dictionary definition.

Still (1)

Digital Warfare (746982) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248439)

Anything made by Sony will still be shit.

Better quality parts? (0)

mpathetiq (726625) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248450)

So, lemme get this straight... a piece of computer equipment works better when the components of higher quality; this is news? Didn't we all learn this lesson when we ran across our first piece of budget hardware?

What about Synergy (2, Funny)

QMO (836285) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248850)

I disagree.

What about Packard Bell computers?
They were made with poor, used, and substandard parts with bad drivers, and yet the computers were still...

Maybe I agree after all.
I think that the demise of Packard Bell in North America is totally justified.

Re:What about Synergy (1)

ginbot462 (626023) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250311)

Thanks, you insensitive clod! I had blocked out the previous existance of Packard Bell computers. Now, I am going to have to go back to therapy. I think there is an E-Machines session next door if anyone is interested.

Re:What about Synergy (1)

Phase Shifter (70817) | more than 9 years ago | (#13252121)

Now, I am going to have to go back to therapy.

One of the darkest moments of working for a major retail chain betweeen college and grad school was the realization that I had to sell the likes of packard bell computers. The single bright spot was the time I put packard bell tech support on hold.

What it means (2, Interesting)

standards (461431) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248458)

Just a word of warning for those not familiar with this advance - there are still a lot of issues to be worked out to being this technology into the field.

My group estimates that it will be 10 or more years before we see this technology impacting consumers around the world.

We all want much more powerful CPUs in a smaller package disapating little heat. But so far built only a few transistors using said technology - far from the density and complexity of a next generation CPU. The reliability of the process needs to be made very very high, orders of magnitude high, in order to make a next generation CPU using this technology... and those techniques are far, far away from being available today at any high volume chip fab facility.

Don't get me wrong - its an important scientific advance, but the manufacturing process still needs a lot of new science to make it happen in a way we'd like to see it.

Re:What it means (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248523)

So 10 Years from now we can have an even smaller gameboy!??

Primal_theory

Re:What it means (1)

Rxke (644923) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250821)

Your group?

What are predictions based on?
I mean, 10 years with current R&D efforts or 10 yrs with massive inceased R&D?

nano being a buzzword, in many respects, but I guess the field is expanding quite rapidly, how hard is it to do predictions?

Re:What it means (1)

standards (461431) | more than 9 years ago | (#13251877)

I can only tell you that it is similar advances have taken about 10 years to hit the fab facilities that we've been associated with. Of course some hit the street sooner, and some never make it to production due to an orthogonal advance or an insurmountable implementation problem.

Obviously, someone could make a full-court press and invest a few extra billion to make it (potentially) happen faster. But in general it isn't though of as being wise, as it could be a huge money sink that doesn't pay off the investment.

Even a massive initial investment doesn't solve all technical hurdles in a faster way. I'd be pissed if I were an investor, sinking a billion, and then have some weenie with a better, cheaper, faster alternative make my investment valueless.

Chip fabrication is a business.

Weird (2, Interesting)

jurt1235 (834677) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248463)

So you have nanotechnology in use, but for a production application you will use the technology by just dipping the, in this case computerchips, into the liquid, instead of carefully placing everything on the chip how it should be.

Suppose this works because there are hooks on the chip on which the nanotubes get stuck. How do you know that two opposing hooks attach to the correct same nanotube, and not to the wrong nanotube, or to two nanotubes with no connection at the other end at all.

I think this works nice in a lab where you only measure certain performance parameters from the use of nanotubes, but that a real chip will not work with this method.

Pure nanotubes work better: That is to be expected based on the properties of a nanotube (guessing here). I think an assembling method to place the nanotubes so you are sure they are at the correct place, is a better direction for this research than a huge chip dipping facility. If they want to do the last they will have to get a license from Pringles anyway, they have the best dipping shape for chips.

Re:Weird (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248510)

You are thinking they would put all the nanotubes into the same solution. However if you were more clever you would allow only one type in suspension, as well designing your chip to use only a few types, if even that.

Re:Weird (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248511)

Um you do realize that they basically make chips by shining light(s) through a mask [think overhead projector] then a lense [or vice versa] onto a PHOTO SENSITIVE chemical that they then wash off right?

Nobody sits there and "places transistors". They're made by the bulk and yes they do have a significant throwaway percentage.

If you walk away with 300 of 540 P4 dies on a 300mm wafer I think they call that a good day [it's probably higher than that I imagine].

Tom

Re:Weird (1)

jurt1235 (834677) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248539)

Yep, but that is washing of the photosensitive coating, and adding a new coating. That is just a global layer for throw away purposes. This is using the coating to stay behind at very specific locations. It looks very different to me since the tubes are premade components in this case which they do place on the chips, instead of having the base material and etching away layers of it.

And yes, a certain percentage breaks in the proces, and a manufacturer even rates it fabs according to how much breaks (with the same base materials, some labs can perform better, also in the long run)

Re:Weird (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248980)

I don't see the difference, you're relying on the coating to be smooth and uniform for the die to work now...

This is basically going backwards. Provided your coating is even you should get the tubes in ever "nook and cranny".

Tom

Re:Weird (1)

jurt1235 (834677) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249330)

But for the tubes to work, they have to be hooked up correctly, that does not seem garanteed with this method. For the coating to work, it "just" has to be uniform (Not to easy either).

Look at the linked article (1)

ChessellTech (904880) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250900)

http://physicsweb.org/articles/news/7/11/13/ [physicsweb.org]

I'm not pretending to have a very good grasp on how this all works, but it seems like these guys have developed some pretty precise control over where the nanotubes get placed by using DNA. Kinda takes 'organic computing' to a whole different level, doesn't it.

usefull? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248492)

But how does this help with getting porn to us faster?

One of a dozen daily.... (3, Interesting)

Solipson (863548) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248534)

... press releases about breakthroughs in nanotech especially in the carbon nanotube/semiconductor field. One should know that the US, EU, Korea and Japan throw an unprecendented amount of money into research in this field right now. And as the yanks have set the success metrics, it means all the researchers have to do is churn out press releases and file patents :-) So, don't hold your breath re dipping, licking and roasting electronic circuits with CNT's.

Clarification... (5, Informative)

wikdwarlock (570969) | more than 9 years ago | (#13248571)

These are not "purer nanotubes". They are more nanotubes and less other junk. Nanotubes grown on a surface will tend to also create other carbon molecules like ash, diamond crystalites, and even buckyballs. The purified stuff is simple this same mix of materials, but filtered to only have the tubes. They're still the same quality of tubes, just not dilluted w/ other crud.

Re:Clarification... (1)

TheClam (209230) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250026)

Dude....you've just basically given a definition of "purer." More nanotubes, less junk. "Not diluted w/ other crud" == "purer". What is your point?

Whoever modded this guy informative doesn't know squat.

Re:Clarification... (1)

jandrese (485) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250416)

I think the point is that the solution is purer, not the nanotubes themselves.

...I think.

Re:Clarification... (1)

wikdwarlock (570969) | more than 9 years ago | (#13251823)

Nanotubes are highly ordered forms of carbon. As such, they can have varying purity. If one of the bonds of a carbon atom in the tube is strained too much (bent, pulled, heated, hit by radiation, etc.) it may break and distort the perfect shape of the tube. A "pure" tube is theoretical only. There's always going to be some slight imperfection in the atomic structure of the tube. My point was that "purer nanotubes" implies that the quality of the tubes was high (few defects). But what they've really done is just leave the same (partially defective) tubes and removed the other stuff that normally comes w/ tubes.

Re:Clarification... (1)

Phase Shifter (70817) | more than 9 years ago | (#13252039)

It seems to me you're confusing "impure" with "imperfection."
All solid-state matter will contain some defects, but "purity" refers to composition, not structure.

Re:Clarification... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13250447)

I'm guessing purer but still a mix of different sized tubes. However they should also be mostly single walled tubes with few multiwalled tubes. No one said what the chirality mix is.

Longer nanotubes brought to you by spammers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13248640)

>Circuits Better with Purer Nanotubes

Sex is also better with a longer nanotube and a stiffer one.

Use generic V1@qra and cis@-LISP to boost your nanotubes!

Carbon is a semiconductor (2, Interesting)

lcsjk (143581) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249310)

Electronics have now evolved through the semiconductor portion of the periodic table of the elements. The early crystal radios used element 82,lead sulfide (galena from wikipedia), then during the early 1900, the so-called foxhole radio used razor blades and pins made from element 50,tin, to make a crystal. Early transistors used element 32,germanium, and integrated circuits moved onto element 14, silicon. The nanotube technology is now moving us to the last of the series which is element 6,carbon. This progression from lead to carbon is also a progression from larger molecules to smaller molecules and fewer elecrons. It took about 50 years to get to silicon and another 50 years to get to carbon. Where will we be in another 50 years?? (Don't be funny and say dead!)

Re:Carbon is a semiconductor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13249473)

Boron, maybe? @.@ Though technically speaking, Carbon is classified as a nonmetal rather than a semiconductor...

Re:Carbon is a semiconductor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13249577)

dead

Carbon is NOT a semiconductor (1)

k98sven (324383) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249792)

Carbon isn't a semiconductor and isn't functioning as a semiconductor here.

Carbon is either a good conductor (nanotubes, fullerenes, graphite) or a good insulator (diamond).

Re:Carbon is a semiconductor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13252153)

metallic hydrogen~

What is new in here ? (4, Interesting)

karvind (833059) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249441)

I am sure researchers working on CNT (carbon nanotubes) will back me up on this. But what is new in here ?

(a) No, these transistors are no better. If you check the nature article, the contacts to the transistors are still lousy (technically, they are still schottky and not ohmic). And contact resistance is too high.

(b) No, they don't really get the nanotubes where they want as claimed in the article. The alignment using this technique is still worse (will require substantial effort to make it better).

(c) One of the bigger drawbacks which was conveniently ignored was the fact that they still cannnot control the number of tubes between the two contacts. So it can be 1 or 2 or 5 and so your current or other properties will vary that much. This technique doesn't make this problem any better.

(d) Last but not the least, no comment about the role of oxygen. All other researchers struggle due to hysteresis behavior, these devices look similar to them.

Re:What is new in here ? (1)

bradbury (33372) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250859)

Precisely. As someone who has been involved in biotech and nanotech for more than a decade the comments above by karvind sum up the situation quite well.

Submissions to /. on these topics should be submitted to those who can evaluate them before they pass into the /. approval arena.

The situation with nanotube wiring can be summed up very simply -- how the fuck are you going to lay them down and connect millions (or billions) of them? If the topic cannot answer that then it is unlikely to be of interest to most /. readers.

That is the reality of current chip fabrication technologies -- unless you are presenting a technology which puts them down in an ordered fashion in parallel in a way which can be directed/managed you have nothing.

And I would hope that /. should not be presenting the hype as "progress".

I guess this means (1)

JrbM689 (896692) | more than 9 years ago | (#13249445)

G5 PowerBooks NEXT TUESDAY!!! Oops, wrong forum.

"purer" ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13250228)

Shouldn't it say "more pure nanotubes" intstead or "purer nanotubes"?

Hello? Engrish?

Diamond Age? (1)

notpaul (181662) | more than 9 years ago | (#13250610)

Speaking of better/faster/cooler chips ...

Whatever happened to all the hype a few years back (a WIRED cover-story comes to mind) about how we would be seeing chips formed from synthetic diamond rather than using silicon ... in order to improve performance and handle heat more efficiently?

Haven't heard much of anything on the 'diamond age' since ... did the DeBeers just off all those guys?

mod 30wn (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13251396)

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