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On June 30, 1948, AT&T Bell Labs unveiled the transitor to the world, creating a spark of explosive economic growth that would lead into the Information Age. William Shockley led a team of researchers, including Walter Brattain and John Bardeen, who invented the device. Like the existing triode vacuum tube device, the transistor could amplify signals and switch currents on and off, but the transistor was smaller, cheaper, and more efficient. Moreover, it could be integrated with millions of other transistors onto a single chip, creating the integrated circuit at the heart of modern computers.

Today, most transistors are being manufactured with a minimum feature size of 60-90nm--roughly 200-300 atoms. As the push continues to make devices even smaller, researchers must account for quantum mechanical effects in the device behavior. With fewer and fewer atoms, the positions of impurities and other irregularities begin to matter, and device reliability becomes an issue. So rather than shrink existing devices, many researchers are working on entirely new devices, based on carbon nanotubes, spintronics, molecular conduction, and other nanotechnologies.

Learn more about transistors from the many resources on this site, listed below. Use our simulation tools to simulate performance characteristics for your own devices.

Resources (281-300 of 301)

  1. Plasmonic Nanophotonics: Coupling Light to Nanostructure via Plasmons

    03 Oct 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Vladimir M. Shalaev

    The photon is the ultimate unit of information because it packages data in a signal of zero mass and has unmatched speed. The power of light is driving the photonicrevolution, and information...

  2. On the Reliability of Micro-Electronic Devices: An Introductory Lecture on Negative Bias Temperature Instability

    28 Sep 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Muhammad A. Alam

    In 1930s Bell Labs scientists chose to focus on Siand Ge, rather than better known semiconductors like Ag2S and Cu2S, mostly because of their reliable performance. Their choice was rewarded with...

  3. Modeling and Simulation of Sub-Micron Thermal Transport

    26 Sep 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Jayathi Murthy

    In recent years, there has been increasing interest in understanding thermal phenomena at the sub-micron scale. Applications include the thermal performance of microelectronic devices,...

  4. Quantum Dots

    21 Jul 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Gerhard Klimeck

    Quantum Dots are man-made artificial atoms that confine electrons to a small space. As such, they have atomic-like behavior and enable the study of quantum mechanical effects on a length scale...

  5. Parallel Computing for Realistic Nanoelectronic Simulations

    12 Sep 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Gerhard Klimeck

    Typical modeling and simulation efforts directed towards the understanding of electron transport at the nanometer scale utilize single workstations as computational engines. Growing understanding...

  6. Towards Molecular Electronic Circuitry: Selective Deposition of Metals on Patterned ...

    28 Jul 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Amy Walker

    We have developed a robust method by which to construct complex two- and three- dimensional structures based on controlling interfacial chemistry. This work has important applications in...

  7. Top-Metal/Molecular Monolayer Interactions and Final Device Performance

    28 Jul 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Curt Richter

    The top-metal/molecular-monolayer interface is of critical importance in the formation of molecular electronic (ME) devices and test structures. I will discuss two experimental studies of ME...

  8. Tuning of Electronic Properties of Organic Semiconductors...

    27 Jul 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Karin Potje-Kamloth

    Intrinsic conducting polymers are key components in organic electronic devices. These materials are also known to be sensitive toward a variety of gases and vapors, which can be exploited by...

  9. Numerical Aspects of NEGF: The Recursive Green Function Algorithm

    14 Jun 2004 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Gerhard Klimeck

    Numerical Aspects of NEGF: The Recursive Green Function Algorithm

  10. Resonant Tunneling of Electrons: Application of Electromagnetic Concepts to Quantum Mechanic Phenomena

    14 Apr 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Greg H. Huff, Kevin Hietpas

  11. Moore's Law Forever?

    13 Jul 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Mark Lundstrom

    This talk covers the big technological changes in the 20th and 21st century that were correctly predicted by Gordon Moore in 1965. Moore's Law states that the number of transistors on a silicon...

  12. Nanodevices: A Bottom-up View

    13 Jun 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Supriyo Datta

    It is common to differentiate between two ways of building a nanodevice: a top-down approach where we start from something big and chisel out what we want and a bottom-up approach where we...

  13. Nanoelectronics: The New Frontier?

    18 Apr 2005 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Mark Lundstrom

    After forty years of advances in integrated circuit technology, microelectronics is undergoing a transformation to nanoelectronics. Modern day MOSFETs now have channel lengths of only 50 nm, and...

  14. Transistors

    04 Aug 2004 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Mark Lundstrom

    The transistor is the basic element of electronic systems. The integrated circuits inside today's personal computers, cell phones, PDA's, etc., contain hundreds of millions of transistors on a...

  15. NanoMOS 2.5 Source Code Download

    22 Feb 2005 | Downloads | Contributor(s): Zhibin Ren, Sebastien Goasguen

    NanoMOS is a 2-D simulator for thin body (less than 5 nm), fully depleted, double-gated n-MOSFETs. A choice of five transport models is available (drift-diffusion, classical ballistic, energy...

  16. Exponential Challenges, Exponential Rewards - The Future of Moore's Law

    14 Dec 2004 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Shekhar Borkar

    Three exponentials have been the foundation of today's electronics, which are often taken for granted—namely transistor density, performance, and energy. Moore's Law captures the impact of...

  17. NEMO 1-D: The First NEGF-based TCAD Tool and Network for Computational Nanotechnology

    28 Dec 2004 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Gerhard Klimeck

    Nanotechnology has received a lot of public attention since U.S. President Clinton announced the U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative. New approaches to applications in electronics,...

  18. Electronic Transport in Semiconductors (Introductory Lecture)

    25 Aug 2004 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Mark Lundstrom

    Welcome to the ECE 656 Introductory lecture. The objective of the course is to develop a clear, physical understanding of charge carrier transport in bulk semiconductors and in small semiconductor...

  19. Nanoelectronics and the Future of Microelectronics

    22 Aug 2002 | Online Presentations | Contributor(s): Mark Lundstrom

    Progress in silicon technology continues to outpace the historic pace of Moore's Law, but the end of device scaling now seems to be only 10-15 years away. As a result, there is intense interest in...

  20. Nanoelectronic Scaling Tradeoffs: What does Physics Have to Say?

    23 Sep 2003 | Presentation Materials | Contributor(s): Victor Zhirnov

    Beyond CMOS, several completely new approaches to information-processing and data-storage technologies and architectures are emerging to address the timeframe beyond the current SIA International..., a resource for nanoscience and nanotechnology, is supported by the National Science Foundation and other funding agencies. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.