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Triple-mode transistors show potential
Date:10/13/2010

ns a graphene transistor can be "n-type" (negative) or "p-type" (positive), depending on whether the carrier originates from the source or drain terminals (which are effectively interchangeable). A third function appears when the input from each carrier is equal: The transistor becomes a frequency multiplier. By combining the three modes, the Rice-Riverside team demonstrated such common signaling schemes as phase and frequency shift keying for wireless and audio applications.

"Our work, and that of others, that focuses on the applications of ambipolarity complements efforts to make a better transistor with graphene," Mohanram said. "It promises more functionality." The research demonstrated that a single graphene transistor could potentially replace many in a typical integrated circuit, he said. Graphene's superior material properties and relative compatibility with silicon-based manufacturing should allow for integration of such circuits in the future, he added.

Technological roadblocks need to be overcome, Mohanram said. Such fabrication steps as dielectric deposition and making contacts "wind up disturbing the lattice, scratching it and introducing defects. That immediately degrades its performance (limiting signal gain), so we have to exercise a lot of care in fabrication.

"But the technology will mature, since so many research groups are working hard to address these challenges," he said.


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Contact: David Ruth
druth@rice.edu
713-348-6327
Rice University
Source:Eurekalert

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