30 Jul '15, 4pm

Speed Record for Light-Emitting Quantum Dots Hints at Faster Computing

Speed Record for Light-Emitting Quantum Dots Hints at Faster Computing

Computers could get a huge speed boost by using photons instead of electrons to process and transmit data. Researchers have taken a big step toward that goal by designing a light-emitting device that can flip on and off 90 billion times per second. The record-breaking speed of the new device, based on quantum dots, could become the basis for faster computing at the speed of light. Duke University researchers engineered the quantum dots— tiny spheres of semiconducting metal about six nanometers in diameter— as part of a “spontaneous emission” light source that can be modulated at speeds of 90 GHz. That’s much faster than the fastest laser diodes which switch on and off at speeds of 25 to 50 GHz. Such a breakthrough could pave the way for new optoelectronic devices that use light to transmit data between traditional electronic microchips. “To achieve such fast spontaneous em...

Full article: http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/semiconductors/optoele...

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