Carbon chips will likely replace silicon circa 2020, with one holdup being the difficulty in fabricating pure crystalline sheets of carbon--graphene--on big wafers. Look for semiconductor researchers to announce commercial availability of graphene wafers within three years. R.C.J.
The next-generation of semiconductors could be based on carbon instead of silicon, according to Penn State researchers ,who claim to have perfected a method of fabricating pure sheets of carbon semiconductor—called graphene—on 100 millimeter (4-inch) wafers. Penn State's Electro-Optics Center Materials (EOC) Division claims its process can be used to fabricate graphene chips that are 100-to-1,000 times faster than silicon, as well as enable more sensitive sensors, electronics, displays, solar cells, sensors and hydrogen storage devices.
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