Researchers at the Ohio State University are looking into using germanium, the base material of transistors from the 1940’s, as a replacement for silicon.
Joshua Goldberger, assistant professor of chemistry, is developing a new form of germanium called germanane. In 2013 Goldberger and his Ohio State University lab team were the first to successfully create a one-atom-thick sheet of germanane. This is so thin one might call it two dimensional.
Ok, but what does all this mean? What is the goal. Their goal is to create a material that will transmit electrons 10 times faster than silicon. But it will also be better at absorbing and emitting light. This will aid in the development of even more efficient LEDs and lasers.
The Goldberger’s team has also been experimenting with adding tin atoms to their new material – which Goldberger claims could make the conduction of electricity 100 percent efficient at room temperature. His lab also reported that this theoretical new material can be made chemically stable.
In fact, the team is already trying to work within traditional silicon manufacturing practices so that their new technology will be easily adaptable to the existing industry when the time comes.