This week at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference (you didn't forget about the International Solid-State Circuits Conference, did you?) a team of European researchers will unveil a 4,000-transistor, 8-bit logic microprocessor with processing power equivalent to a simple silicon chip circa 1977. But this chip is different. This chip is flexible. The world's first organic microprocessor is here.
Flexible, organic chips have long been on technology's to-do list, but coaxing consistency out of organic transistors has been something of a chore. Organic transistors lack the monocrystalline structure of silicon, which makes their behavior somewhat unpredictable--each one can have a slightly different voltage threshold--an undesirable characteristic for a transistor to possess.
The Belgian team at nanotech researcher Imec in Leuven sorted out the problem by building an extra gate in the back of each transistor, a backdoor that allows for better control of the semiconductors electric field, solving the switching problems usually associated with organic chips.
However, the organic microprocessor they've built is still not exactly busting through the upper limits of Moore's Law; as mentioned above, it's roughly equivalent to a 1970s-era silicon chip, hardly a game changer for the overall chip industry. But it does have its place. The tiny, flexible, 25-micrometer-thick microprocessors could lead to better and cheaper flexible displays and sensors that can be embedded into just about anything, from clothing to construction materials to foods or pharmaceuticals.
Give it a few years (maybe 5) of R&D and you will see them start to catch up to current microprocessors
it looks like a magna-doodle screen...
If they can make it cheap, look at the potential of advertisements in clothing industry! Bendable and hopefully washable processors on clothes, which are given out free of charge to anyone who is willing to wear clothes for example with car, or battery, or any type of ethical advertisements on their back or front - you have to think about children. Free clothes for everyone. Hopefully, they wont make it to the food industry, thus making us eat an apple, that has a layer of car advertisement on it :D
One step closer to putting itty-itty robots in our food. Awesome! ... not.
I wanna computer that wraps around my wrist like a sweat band... lol and maybe an eye projection screen that i can only see and is touch sensitive... cant wait for the future!
"sometimes it takes a thousand notes to make one sound" -Buckethead
well truly i think that it can be a good idea but then again its organic which means that it can act on its own.
I for one think this is great news. Now that we have the chips, it's just a matter of time before they are perfected and are just as fast as their synthetic cousins. The medical applications for this are limitless!
LOL. that is not even close to what "organic" means.
"Size adjusting fit"
"Your jacket is now dry."
@treckstar unfortunately I have to agree with oft wrong B.V.
this time he is correct. An "organic" compound or chemical is ANY chemical or compound that contains carbon atoms. There are a few exceptions like carbon dioxide and cyanide and carbide compounds.
traditionally IC chips are made from silicon, but silicon is rather brittle and doest not bend very much.
curious about the applications of this. Clothes are the first thing that come to mind. the DOD would love that for their soldier of the future battle field directive they love pumping money into (and for good reason, who wouldn't want to be like the soldiers in Ghost Recon)
"Oh and machine washable, dear. That's a new feature" Edna -The Incredibles
i still say it looks like a flexible magnadoodle.
Would this be good for car windshields? How about windows? i know most windows should be left alone, but it would be really cool to have a few that will let you surf the web! But if Moor's law says we should be reaching the limit soon, how long before this technology becomes obsolete until we figure out flexible photonic computing? quantum computing is out of the question for now, i think, but actually, wouldn't possible foundations for photonic computing already be withing arms reach of being flexible? whatever's transparent, right?