Monday, September 06, 2010

#Piezotronics Defines new #Semiconductor-Device Category

Piezoelectric materials generate electricity from mechanical motion, or visa versa, but these researchers for the first time have created transistors and logic gates from piezoelectronic devices dubbing their invention "peizotronics." Look for piezotronic devices for applications in sensing and actuating motion over the next five years. RColinJohnson @NextGenLog

A Georgia Tech researcher manipulates and measures nanodevices based on zinc oxide nanowires fabricated on a flexible polymer substrate. (Credit: Gary Meek)

Here is what EETimes says about piezotronics: Piezotronic transistors harness the piezoelectric effect in zinc-oxide nanowires to transform mechanical motion into a signal that controls arithmetic—logic operations. Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology recently demonstrated their new breed of piezotronic circuits performing standard digital circuit functions.
Piezotronics marks a new class electronic device that uses a MEMS-like moving part to create an electric field which controls a field-effect transistors (FET). Its inventor, professor Zhong Lin Wang, claims that such strain-gated transistors work like a traditional FET—with the current flowing from source to drain being gated by an electric field--but the field is generated by bending a piezoelectric nanowire—called strain—rather than by storing charge on the gate. The resulting strain-gated transistor could have direct uses for nanobots, microfluidics and other applications of micro-electro-mechanical systems...
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