Transistor is the most energy-efficient ever

May 14, 2020 //By Peter Clarke
Transistor breaks
Professor Adrian Ionescu and his team at EPFL’s Nanoelectronic Devices Laboratory (Nanolab) have made an energy-efficient transistor using 2D layers of tungsten diselenide (WSe2) and tin diselenide (SnSe2), two semiconducting materials.

Long-range interactions that arise from the spatial separation of electrons and holes in these materials and can give rise to novel quantum, as well as classical multi-particle correlation effects. Known as a 2D/2D tunneling transistor, the device exploits the band alignment of the WSe2/SnSe2 gate junction.

The controlled tunnelling is the way in which the 2D/2D transistor has broken what would otherwise have been a fundamental limit.

The Nanolab team from Lausanne, Switzerland, worked with a group led by Professor Mathieu Luisier at ETH Zurich to test and confirm the new tunnel transistor’s properties via atomistic simulation. "This is the first time that we've broken through this fundamental limit, while at the same time achieving higher performance than a standard transistor made from the same 2D semiconducting material, and at a very low voltage supply," said Professor Ionescu. The supply voltage is typically 300mV, which also contributes to the transistors energy efficiency.

The technology could be used to build electronic systems that are almost as energy-efficient as the neurons in the human brain and find application in wearables and artificial intelligent systems at the edge, Professor Ionescu said.

However, Professor Ionescu added that turning this laboratory proof-of-concept into a manufacturable and commercially-viable product will require several more years of research and development.

Related links and articles:

www.epfl.ch

Nature article

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