Forum für Wissenschaft, Industrie und Wirtschaft

Hauptsponsoren:     3M 
Datenbankrecherche:

 

Georgia State physicist, international researchers discover fastest light-driven process

06.12.2012
A discovery that promises transistors – the fundamental part of all modern electronics – controlled by laser pulses that will be 10,000 faster than today's fastest transistors has been made by a Georgia State University professor and international researchers.

Professor of Physics Mark Stockman worked with Professor Vadym Apalkov of Georgia State and a group led by Ferenc Krausz at the prestigious Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics and other well-known German institutions.

There are three basic types of solids: metals, semiconductors, used in today's transistors, and insulators – also called dielectrics.

Dielectrics do not conduct electricity and get damaged or break down if too high of fields of energy are applied to them. The scientists discovered that when dielectrics were given very short and intense laser pulses, they start conducting electricity while remaining undamaged.

The fastest time a dielectric can process signals is on the order of 1 femtosecond – the same time as the light wave oscillates and millions of times faster than the second handle of a watch jumps.

Dielectric devices hold promise to allow for much faster computing than possible today with semiconductors. Such a device can work at 1 petahertz, while the processor of today's computer runs slightly faster than at 3 gigahertz.

"Now we can fundamentally have a device that works 10 thousand times faster than a transistor that can run at 100 gigahertz," Stockman said. "This is a field effect, the same type that controls a transistor. The material becomes conductive as a very high electrical field of light is applied to it, but dielectrics are 10,000 times faster than semiconductors."

The results were published online Dec. 5 in Nature. The research institutions include the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, the Department of Physics at the Munich Technical University, the Physics Department at Ludwig Maximilian University at Munich and the Fritz Haber Institute at Berlin, Germany.

At one time, scientists thought dielectrics could not be used in signal processing – breaking down when required high electric fields were applied. Instead, Stockman said, it is possible for them to work if such extreme fields are applied at a very short time.

In a second paper also published online Dec. 5 in Nature, Stockman and his fellow researchers experimented with probing optical processes in a dielectric – silica – with very short extreme ultraviolet pulses. They discovered the fastest process that can fundamentally exist in condensed matter physics, unfolding at about at 100 attoseconds – millions of times faster than the blink of an eye.

The scientists were able to show that very short, highly intense light pulses can cause on-off electric currents – necessary in computing to make the 1s and 0s needed in the binary language of computers -- in dielectrics, making extremely swift processing possible.

Stockman's work was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy.

The first paper, "Optical-field-induced current in dielectrics" is available through http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature11567. The second, "Controlling dielectrics with the electric field of light," is available through http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature11720.

Jeremy Craig | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.gsu.edu

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Transportable laser
23.01.2018 | Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB)

nachricht New for three types of extreme-energy space particles: Theory shows unified origin
23.01.2018 | Penn State

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Optisches Nanoskop ermöglicht Abbildung von Quantenpunkten

Physiker haben eine lichtmikroskopische Technik entwickelt, mit der sich Atome auf der Nanoskala abbilden lassen. Das neue Verfahren ermöglicht insbesondere, Quantenpunkte in einem Halbleiter-Chip bildlich darzustellen. Dies berichten die Wissenschaftler des Departements Physik und des Swiss Nanoscience Institute der Universität Basel zusammen mit Kollegen der Universität Bochum in «Nature Photonics».

Mikroskope machen Strukturen sichtbar, die dem menschlichen Auge sonst verborgen blieben. Einzelne Moleküle und Atome, die nur Bruchteile eines Nanometers...

Im Focus: Optical Nanoscope Allows Imaging of Quantum Dots

Physicists have developed a technique based on optical microscopy that can be used to create images of atoms on the nanoscale. In particular, the new method allows the imaging of quantum dots in a semiconductor chip. Together with colleagues from the University of Bochum, scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute reported the findings in the journal Nature Photonics.

Microscopes allow us to see structures that are otherwise invisible to the human eye. However, conventional optical microscopes cannot be used to image...

Im Focus: Vollmond-Dreierlei am 31. Januar 2018

Am 31. Januar 2018 fallen zum ersten Mal seit dem 30. Dezember 1982 "Supermond" (ein Vollmond in Erdnähe), "Blutmond" (eine totale Mondfinsternis) und "Blue Moon" (ein zweiter Vollmond im Kalendermonat) zusammen - Beobachter im deutschen Sprachraum verpassen allerdings die sichtbaren Phasen der Mondfinsternis.

Nach den letzten drei Vollmonden am 4. November 2017, 3. Dezember 2017 und 2. Januar 2018 ist auch der bevorstehende Vollmond am 31. Januar 2018 ein...

Im Focus: Maschinelles Lernen im Quantenlabor

Auf dem Weg zum intelligenten Labor präsentieren Physiker der Universitäten Innsbruck und Wien ein lernfähiges Programm, das eigenständig Quantenexperimente entwirft. In ersten Versuchen hat das System selbständig experimentelle Techniken (wieder)entdeckt, die heute in modernen quantenoptischen Labors Standard sind. Dies zeigt, dass Maschinen in Zukunft auch eine kreativ unterstützende Rolle in der Forschung einnehmen könnten.

In unseren Taschen stecken Smartphones, auf den Straßen fahren intelligente Autos, Experimente im Forschungslabor aber werden immer noch ausschließlich von...

Im Focus: Artificial agent designs quantum experiments

On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.

We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...

Alle Focus-News des Innovations-reports >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Veranstaltungen

15. BF21-Jahrestagung „Mobilität & Kfz-Versicherung im Fokus“

23.01.2018 | Veranstaltungen

Gemeinsam innovativ werden

23.01.2018 | Veranstaltungen

Leichtbau zu Ende gedacht – Herausforderung Recycling

23.01.2018 | Veranstaltungen

VideoLinks Wissenschaft & Forschung
Weitere VideoLinks im Überblick >>>
 
Aktuelle Beiträge

Lebensrettende Mikrobläschen

23.01.2018 | Biowissenschaften Chemie

3D-Druck von Metallen: Neue Legierung ermöglicht Druck von sicheren Stahl-Produkten

23.01.2018 | Maschinenbau

CHP1-Mutation verursacht zerebelläre Ataxie

23.01.2018 | Biowissenschaften Chemie

Weitere B2B-VideoLinks
IHR
JOB & KARRIERE
SERVICE
im innovations-report
in Kooperation mit academics