What is the role of nanotechnology in computers?

Nanotechnology in computers provides the need for faster computational processes at lower temperatures than traditional transistor-based computer components. In traditional computing, transistors use silicon components as an affordable and easy-to-manufacture method to power smaller, faster computers and electronic devices such as netbooks, smartphones, and personal assistant devices. Such powerful devices in such a small size produce a lot of heat, however, reducing the effectiveness, performance and longevity of silicon components. Nanotechnology in computing solves the heat dilemma by providing improved processor power at lower temperatures and lighter weights.

Nanotechnology is used to make small computing devices such as smartphones.

Nanotechnology in computers makes use of nanomaterials, tiny, molecule-sized machines that process information in a similar way to the intricate and complex cells of a living organism. Similar to cells, nanomaterials exist on a microscopic level, a nanometer measuring one billionth of a meter, or 1/50,000th the thickness of a human hair. Nanotechnology in computing, therefore, operates at a minuscule level. Computer makers create long, microscopic strands of carbon atoms, called carbon nanotubes, into tiny transistors that provide twice the processing power of silicon chips, while generating much less heat and lighter components. In addition, nanotechnology applications deliver more efficient performance, conserving energy and increasing battery life for smaller portable electronic devices.

Nanotechnology could eventually replace the hard drive.

The search for more powerful computers, with larger memory, with lower weights and lower temperatures, is responsible for the development of nanotechnology in computers. In addition to greater processing power, nanotechnology in computers is providing advanced means of memory storage. The “nanodot”, with its ability to condense large amounts of data into a compact compartment, could eventually replace the hard drive. Nanomaterials are generally more expensive than silicon materials, but the increased demand outweighs the economic concern.

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With the development of the transistor after World War II, the popularity of consumer electronics exploded. In four decades, the personal computer was born. As a bulky desktop device, there was no immediate need for portability on computers. Fans inside the computer case, a necessary ingredient for keeping transistors and other computer parts cool, took up precious space. However, as these early computers were stationary, manufacturers saw no real need to downsize the machines.

The development of the cell phone and small computer devices created the need for smarter and more efficient ways to carry out computing processes. The silicon chip answered the call for faster computing. As devices became smaller and consumers demanded more powerful technology, the heat produced by the silicon components put a strain on electronic devices. Computer science developed nanotechnology, or nanotechnology, to accommodate the need for smaller devices operating at lower temperatures and faster speeds.

Demand for smaller devices has challenged engineers and chipmakers to design high-powered chips in smaller packages.

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