UK engineers claims to run chip at record speed

Engineers at the University of Southampton have set a world record, running a bipolar transistor at a heat-inducing 110GHz.

Boffins at the university's School of Electronics and Computer Science discovered that by adding fluorine "implants" to the base of a bi-polar transistor, it could be made narrower, allowing more rapid electron transit and higher frequencies.

The fluorine disperses a phenomenon known as "boron diffusion", which demands larger, and therefore slower, micro-componentry. The team believes there is potential to reduce boron diffusion by a further 50 percent.

"By using fluorine implants, the transistor can operate at a higher frequency which means it will be twice as fast as it was before," said Professor Peter Ashburn, who lead the research team. "This means that the electronics industry will be able to achieve better performance at little extra cost."

Bipolar transistors are used in the solid state circuitry found in mobile phones and wireless devices. The discovery means that a doubling of the power of these devices has potentially moved form the distant horizon to the near future.

For raw horsepower, the Southampton transistors can't compete with a chip announced by IBM in June, which reached 500GHz using heavyweight cooling technology. However, that was based on silicon-germanium (SiGe), a different type of transistor from Southampton's bipolar design.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John E. Dunn

Techworld.com
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Skywatcher Dobsonian 8″ Collapsible Telescope

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Whodunnit™ Duo-Scope MFL-007 Microscope Kit

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Logitech Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?