David Kirkpatrick

December 7, 2009

Introducing the one-atom transistor

Via KurzweilAI.net — This really is just amazing. A transistor made of one single atom of phosphorus.

Single-atom transistor created
KurzweilAI.net, Dec. 7, 2009

A working transistor whose active region comprises only of a single phosphorus atom in silicon has been built byresearchers from Helsinki University of Technology, University of New South Wales, and University of Melbourne.

The device uses sequential tunneling of single electrons between the phosphorus atom and the source and drain leads of the transistor. The tunneling can be suppressed or allowed by controlling the voltage on a nearby metal electrode with a width of a few tens of nanometers.

The researchers plan to use the spin degree of freedom of an electron of the phosphorus donor as a quantum bit (qubit). They were able to observe spin up and down states for a single phosphorus donor in a magnetic field for the first time–a crucial step towards the control of these states in realizing a qubit.


(a) Scanning electron microscope image of single-atomtransistor
(b) Differential conductance through the transistor with 4 Tesla magnetic field

More informationHelsinki University of Technology news

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1 Comment »

  1. [...] transistor, Yale University — davidkirkpatrick @ 2:16 am I’ve already introduced the one-atom transistor earlier this month. Now here’s new research offering a transistor created from a single [...]

    Pingback by Introducing the one-molecule transistor « David Kirkpatrick — December 24, 2009 @ 2:16 am


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