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TEXAS INSTRUMENTS DEMONSTRATES WORLD'S FIRST CHIP USING QUANTUM MECHANICAL EFFECTS THAT OPERATES AT ROOM TEMPERATURE

 DALLAS, Dec. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Researchers at Texas Instruments have demonstrated a new type of computer chip -- the world's first integrated circuit (IC) that takes advantage of quantum-mechanical effects and operates at room temperature. The quantum effect chip is projected to operate over three times faster and hold three times more functions than conventional chips. Faster, smaller chips are key to the development of future generations of computers. The TI development was described in a paper given this week at the International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) in Washington, D.C.
 Over the past 30 years, researchers and chip designers have been developing new ways to pack more and more circuitry on a single chip. This has been a significant factor in the growth of the electronics industry. One approach to building even more compact circuitry uses quantum-mechanical effects. Once believed to be a laboratory novelty, quantum-mechanics capitalizes on the principle that an electron will behave as a wave and pass through classically impenetrable barriers under certain conditions.
 TI has demonstrated the quantum effect chip at room temperature, 75 degrees Fahrenheit, a first for a circuit built using quantum effects. Prior to the TI development, devices based on quantum effects were limited to operations at -320 degrees F., too cold for practical applications such as desktop and portable computers.
 "Demonstrating this circuit at room temperature is a significant breakthrough for the practical, and near-term, utilization of quantum effect devices," said Gary Frazier, nanoelectronics manager at TI. "These new, quantum devices can now be designed into commercial systems without the need for special cooling."
 Scientists at TI's Central Research Laboratories developed the new quantum effect chip using resonant tunneling transistors. The chip consists of 17 transistors which replaces as many as 40 conventional transistors for the same type of circuit in a conventional chip. The resonant tunneling transistors take advantage of quantum effects which govern the behavior of matter and energy at dimensions of .02 microns, 25 times smaller than today's chips. (A human hair is 75 microns wide.)
 Replacing conventional transistors with resonant tunneling transistors would mean a significant leap in the number of functions that could be performed by a chip. Resonant tunneling circuits perform an equivalent function with fewer transistors than currently used by industry today.
 This ability permits an increase in performance.
 "This demonstration is evidence that quantum effect devices are moving from laboratory curiosities to engineering components," Frazier commented. "Future generations of ICs will utilize resonant tunneling transistors. This opens up the possibility for smaller computers that operate faster than computers using today's technology. Practical applications of quantum devices are about five to six years away."
 Scientists in TI's Central Research Labs have worked with quantum effect devices since 1982. The first quantum effect transistor was demonstrated at TI in 1988. Work on the quantum chip has been supported in part by contracts from the Air Force Wright Laboratories, the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), and the Office of Naval Research.
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 /NOTE TO EDITORS: Texas Instruments Incorporated, headquartered in Dallas, is a high-technology company with sales or manufacturing operations in more than 30 countries. TI products and services include semiconductors; defense electronics systems; software productivity tools; printers, notebook computers and consumer electronics products; telecommunication systems; custom engineering and manufacturing services; electrical controls; and metallurgical materials.
 Additional technical information and photos of the quantum effect chip are available upon request./
 -0- 12/8/93
 /CONTACT: Sheree G. Fitzpatrick of Texas Instruments, 214-995-2984 (Please do not publish this number)/
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CO: Texas Instruments ST: Texas IN: CPR SU: PDT

TW -- NY043 -- 1696 12/08/93 10:44 EST
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Date:Dec 8, 1993
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