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Materials Science at Oregon State University

Nanoelectronics and the curse of the contacts

Date: Thursday, Feb 12th
Presenter: Professor Raj Solanki, Portland State University


The evolution of high speed computers over the past 40 years has been fueled by the technology developed to miniaturize the silicon transistor. The process of device miniaturization has been achieved by gradual modification of design, materials, and fabrication process. However, as the device dimensions are rapidly approaching 25 nanometer scale, the traditional methods and materials are pushed to their limits. Moreover, short-channel effects and current leakage will prevent further reduction in the size of these devices. Devices based on quantum mechanical laws offer a possible solution to continue the trend predicted by Moore?s Law. These devices, based on nanowires and nanotubes, will alter the operating principles and will present new challenges. Among the major challenges is the contact which occupies a significant fraction of the device area and tends to dominate the device performance. This presentation will consist of two parts, first the basic properties of the nanostructures will be reviewed, and then the issues related to the contacts to these devices will be discussed.