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17 February 2016

University of Utah develops tin monoxide as 2D electronic material

A team led by University of Utah materials science and engineering associate professor Ashutosh Tiwari says that it has discovered a new kind of two-dimensional semiconducting material for transistors that opens the door for much faster computers and smartphones that also consume much less power (K J Saji et al, '2D Tin Monoxide—An Unexplored p-Type van der Waals Semiconductor: Material Characteristics and Field Effect Transistors', Advanced Electronic Materials; DOI: 10.1002/aelm.201500453). The paper was co-authored by University of Utah materials science and engineering doctoral students K. J. Saji and Kun Tian, and Michael Snure of the Wright-Patterson Air Force Research Lab near Dayton, Ohio.

The tin monoxide (SnO) is a layer of 2D material only one atom thick, allowing electrical charges to move through it much more quickly than conventional 3D materials such as silicon. 

While researchers have recently discovered new types of 2D material such as graphene, molybdenun disulfide and borophene, they have been n-type materials that only allow the movement of negative charge carriers (electrons). But to create an electronic device you need semiconductor material that allows the movement of both negative charge carriers (electrons) and positive charge carriers (holes). The tin monoxide material is reckoned to be the first stable p-type 2D semiconductor material.

"Now we have everything — we have p-type 2D semiconductors and n-type 2D semiconductors," he says. "Now things will move forward much more quickly."

It is reckoned that the new 2D tin monoxide material could lead to the manufacturing of transistors that are even smaller and faster than those in use currently. Such transistors could lead to computers and smartphones that are more than 100 times faster than regular devices. Also, because the electrons move through just one layer, there will be less resistance, so the microprocessors will not get as hot as normal computer chips. They also will require much less power to run (crucial for mobile electronics that operate from battery power). Tiwari says this could be especially important for medical devices such as electronic implants that will run longer on a single battery charge. "In two or three years we should see at least some prototype device," Tiwari forecasts.

Tags: 2D

Visit: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/aelm.201500453/full

Visit: www.nmrl.mse.utah.edu

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