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New kind of transistor radios shows capability of nanotube technology
Date:1/28/2008

l chip-processing techniques.

The ability to grow these densely packed horizontal arrays of nanotubes to produce high current outputs, and the ability to manufacture the arrays reliably and in large quantities, allows us to build circuits and transistors with high performance and ask the next question, Rogers said. That question is: What type of electronics is the most sensible place to explore applications of nanotubes" Our results suggest that analog RF (radio frequency) represents one such area.

As a demonstration of the growth technique and todays nanotube analog potential, Rogers and collaborators at the U. of I. and Northrop Grumman fabricated nanotube transistor radios, in which nanotube devices provided all of the key functions.

The radios were based on a heterodyne receiver design consisting of four capacitively coupled stages: an active resonant antenna, two radio-frequency amplifiers, and an audio amplifier, all based on nanotube devices. Headphones plugged directly into the output of a nanotube transistor. In all, seven nanotube transistors were incorporated into the design of each radio.

In one test, the researchers tuned one of the nanotube-transistor radios to WBAL-AM (1090) in Baltimore, to pick up a traffic report.

We were not trying to make the worlds tiniest radios, Rogers said. The nanotube radios are a demonstration, an important milestone toward building the technology into a form that ultimately would be commercially competitive with entrenched approaches.


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Contact: James E. Kloeppel
kloeppel@uiuc.edu
217-244-1073
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Source:Eurekalert

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