Carbon Nanotubes Replacing Silicon

Tek Syndicate!  

Came across this interesting news story from regarding carbon nanotubes replacing silicon in future computers.  A copy of the transcript is below. 

Not going to ask you 20 questions on this.  Just want to hear your reaction to this migration, how you think it will happen, and how it will affect computing / gaming as we experience it today.




Silicon - which is nothing more than sand, really - is an essential ingredient of computers.

Here's the problem, though: as computers shrink in size, they're approaching the limits of silicon's ability to take the heat before it starts melting. 

Researchers at Stanford University think they've come up with an answer: build computers with carbon nanotubes, instead of silicon. 

Carbon nanotubes are only an atom thick - thousands of them lined up could fit across a human hair - so, they take up hardly any space. 

The Stanford researchers have already created a prototype that uses them - and experts say the results are impressive. The next step would be to find an industrial facility that can make even more complex machines. 

In theory, computers that use carbon nanotubes instead of silicon would open up all sorts of new possibilities for speed and size. 

We're still possibly years away from a carbon nanotube computer that's ready for the market - but we've come a long way...


Graphene is the greatest thing since sliced bread. However, they are incredibly difficult to work with. They won't take off until silicon is literally on its last leg. When the graphene is laid, it has to be near perfect for it to work properly. The tolerances are absurdly low(I want to say less than 1% but don't quote me). Graphene is a viable solution but you can't use it if you can't lay it perfectly