Breakthrough: Single Atom Transistor

Everything uses a computer on a chip. Everything...

Modern computer architecture has not changed since the first vacuum tube monster Eniac dimmed the lights of Baltimore. The Eniac filled an entire warehouse and had less power than a cheap child's toy of today.

The basis of modern computer technology is the transistor on a silicon chip invented in 1954.

The ultimate goal for the past 60 years has been a transistor the size of a single atom. Gordon Moore of Intel predicted the atom-sized transistor would not be invented until 2020. He was 10 years off.

‘Our group has proved that it is really possible to position one phosphorus atom in a silicon environment - exactly as we need it - with near-atomic precision...’ says Dr Martin Fuechsle from UNSW.

In about 10 years, atom sized transistors will be used to build quantum computers. Computers that 'think' will become an instant reality. Once these things are in your hand-held the iPhone of today will seem like a can on a string. And every field of science will advance exponentially overnight.

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