[extropy-chat] Taiwan

Mike Lorrey mlorrey at yahoo.com
Fri Apr 1 05:16:32 UTC 2005

A few years ago we were reading articles on this list of an
IBM-Northwestern U project demonstrating quantum well photonic
circuits, in which the researchers were stating that their circuits
would be 1000 times faster and 1000 times smaller than electronic
circuits. What happened to those claims?

--- Dan Clemmensen <dgc at cox.net> wrote:
> Mike Lorrey wrote:
> >I was under the impression we were going to shift to photonic
> circuits
> >within 3-5 years. That alone is a huge reduction in size and power
> >requirements. What gives?
> >
> >  
> >
> This is a very common misconception.
> Photonic circuits are bigger than electronic circuits, because
> photons are
> bigger than electrons.
> The photons we know how to manipulate easily are visible (850nm) and
> infrared (1300nm and 1500nm.)  We cannot easily manipulate
> higher-frequency
> photons: the semiconductor industry abandoned the effort to use 157nm
> photons
> for lithography for the next generation.
> By contrast, the electrons are "small." they can be treated as being 
> localized to
> about 10nm before quantum tunneling becomes a serious issue (if I
> recall 
> correctly.)
> Photons are superior to electrons in several important ways, but
> circuit 
> size is not
> one of them. chip-to-chip electronic connections require high power
> to 
> overcome
> capacitance. There is a speed at which it will take less power to 
> convert the signal
> to light, and that speed is rapidly approaching.
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Mike Lorrey
Vice-Chair, 2nd District, Libertarian Party of NH
"Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom.
It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves."
                                      -William Pitt (1759-1806) 
Blog: http://intlib.blogspot.com

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