Physicists Found a Way To Make Future Electronics More Efficient

A team of scientists at Rutgers University-New Brunswick has found a way to make a material that will prevent energy loss between transistors. The discovery is the answer to future technology that will require less power. It could also make quantum computing faster than the computers we have today.

The team used a special mix of materials that have magnetic and insulator properties. They published their findings in the online journal Nature Physics.

Weida Wu is an associate professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Rutgers University. Wu is also the senior author of the study, explaining their discovery:

“This material, although it’s much diluted in terms of magnetic properties, can still behave like a magnet and conducts electricity at low temperature without energy loss. At least in principle, if you can make it work at a higher temperature, you can use it for electronic interconnections within silicon chips used in computers and other devices.”

Wenbo Wang is the leader of the study and a physics doctoral student in Rutgers’ School of Graduate Studies.

Co-authors of the study are scientists at Tsinghua University and the Collaborative Innovation Center of Quantum Matter (Beijing, China). They have used a combination of chromium and vanadium as magnetic elements and an insulator made from bismuth, antimony, and tellurium. If the electrons in the material are aligned in a direction, they will have zero energy loss. This means that computers and electronics could use transistors within silicon chips, conducting electricity with maximum efficiency.

Zero Energy Loss at Absolute Zero Temperature

Wu explained that today’s silicon chips use metal for electrical interconnections in transistors, but this causes a lot of energy loss.

The scientists used the quantum anomalous Hall insulator (a special magnetic insulator) to demonstrate the spinning electrons can align uniformly. When the temperature is close to absolute zero (minus 459.67 degrees Fahrenheit), electricity is conducted with zero energy loss.

The next step in their demonstrations is to see if they can make this phenomenon at a higher and practical temperature. They will also build a platform for quantum computing.

Doris’s passion for writing started to take shape in college where she was editor-in-chief of the college newspaper. Even though she ended up working in IT for more than 7 years, she’s now back to what he always enjoyed doing. With a true passion for technology, Doris mostly covers tech-related topics.