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Old 07-05-2011, 03:10 PM   #21
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Intel Increases Transistor Speed by Building Upward
Published: May 4, 2011

HILLSBORO, Ore. - Intel announced on Wednesday that it had again found a way to make computer chips that could process information more quickly and with less power in less space.

The transistors on computer chips - whether for PC's or smartphones - have been designed in essentially the same way since 1959 when Robert Noyce, Intel's co-founder, and Jack Kilby of Texas Instruments independently invented the first integrated circuits that became the basic building block of electronic devices in the information age.

These early transistors were built on a flat surface. But like a real estate developer building skyscrapers to get more rentable space from a plot of land, Intel is now building up. When the space between the billions of tiny electronic switches on the flat surface of a computer chip is measured in the width of just dozens of atoms, designers needed the third dimension to find more room.

The company has already begun making its microprocessors using a new 3-D transistor design, called a Finfet (for fin field-effect transistor), which is based around a remarkably small pillar, or fin, of silicon that rises above the surface of the chip. Intel, based in Santa Clara, Calif., plans to enter general production based on the new technology some time later this year.

I thought this was really interesting when i first heard about it. Intel has really been pushing processing power up in leaps and bounds the past several years, ever since the core2 duo.

Last edited by jeffro3000; 07-05-2011 at 03:11 PM.
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