Engineering

Semiconductors reach the quantum world

Quantum effects in superconductors could give semiconductor technology a new twist. Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI and Cornell University in New York State have identified a composite material that could integrate ...

Electronics & Semiconductors

A four-megabit nvCIM macro for edge AI devices

Edge AI devices, systems that combine artificial intelligence (AI) and edge computing techniques, are becoming an essential part of the rapidly growing Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem. These devices include smart speakers, ...

Electronics & Semiconductors

Nitride ferroelectric semiconductors for next-generation electronics

For the first time, researchers achieved single-crystalline high quality ferroelectric III-V semiconductors that can be integrated into existing platforms for a broad range of ferroelectric, electronic, optoelectronic, and ...

Electronics & Semiconductors

Fabricating qubits using advanced semiconductor manufacturing processes

Quantum computers are promising computing machines that perform computations leveraging the collective properties of quantum physics states. These computers could help to tackle many computational problems that are currently ...

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Semiconductor

A semiconductor is a material that has a resistivity value between that of a conductor and an insulator. The conductivity of a semiconductor material can be varied under an external electrical field. Devices made from semiconductor materials are the foundation of modern electronics, including radio, computers, telephones, and many other devices. Semiconductor devices include the transistor, solar cells, many kinds of diodes including the light-emitting diode, the silicon controlled rectifier, and digital and analog integrated circuits. Solar photovoltaic panels are large semiconductor devices that directly convert light energy into electrical energy. In a metallic conductor, current is carried by the flow of electrons. In semiconductors, current can be carried either by the flow of electrons or by the flow of positively-charged "holes" in the electron structure of the material.

Silicon is used to create most semiconductors commercially. Dozens of other materials are used, including germanium, gallium arsenide, and silicon carbide. A pure semiconductor is often called an “intrinsic” semiconductor. The conductivity, or ability to conduct, of semiconductor material can be drastically changed by adding other elements, called “impurities” to the melted intrinsic material and then allowing the melt to solidify into a new and different crystal. This process is called "doping".

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