Thursday, January 22, 2009

the silicon solution

Article: “The Silicon Solution” By Mario Paniccia and Sean Koehl
1/21/09 [IEEE Spectrum]

A faster internet is always in demand. Today, speeds of traffic data are reaching ten billion bits per second. Although this rate may seem impressive, Intel and other companies are still coming up with faster and faster microprocessors. There is one major catch however; the copper. Copper is used in a lot of internet hardware including the wireless serves that allow connectivity. Factory printed-circuit boards that contain this copper have tiny, microscopic imperfections that have not been a problem for our generation so far. However, as the speed of internet traffic reaches ten billion bits per second, these imperfections cause data to be distorted. Researchers have found a solution for the problem by replacing the copper on the circuit boards with Silicon. Silicon can be easily adjusted to work into the factory printed-circuit boards and other servers. Researches even predict that wireless internet speeds have the opportunity to reach over one-hundred billion bits per second without and distortion from the silicon. This would allow people like us to download a full movie on our lab top in seconds.

1 comment:

  1. I think this is an interesting story. Although I do have a question about this change. Will this change from copper to silicon increase costs in any way?