Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

First images of sub-nano pore structures captured

Date:
June 9, 2010
Source:
Cornell University
Summary:
Moore's law marches on: In the quest for faster and cheaper computers, scientists have imaged pore structures in insulation material at sub-nanometer scale for the first time. Understanding these structures could substantially enhance computer performance and power usage of integrated circuits, say scientists.

Moore's law marches on: In the quest for faster and cheaper computers, scientists have imaged pore structures in insulation material at sub-nanometer scale for the first time. Understanding these structures could substantially enhance computer performance and power usage of integrated circuits, say Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) and Cornell University scientists.
Credit: Huolin Xin, Muller Group, Cornell University

Moore's law marches on: In the quest for faster and cheaper computers, scientists have imaged pore structures in insulation material at sub-nanometer scale for the first time. Understanding these structures could substantially enhance computer performance and power usage of integrated circuits, say Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) and Cornell University scientists.

To help maintain the ever-increasing power and performance benefits of semiconductors -- like the speed and memory trend described in Moore's law -- the industry has introduced very porous, low-dielectric constant materials to replace silicon dioxide as the insulator between nano-scaled copper wires. This has sped up the electrical signals sent along these copper wires inside a computer chip, and at the same time reduced power consumption.

"Knowing how many of the molecule-sized voids in the carefully-engineered Swiss cheese survive in an actual device will greatly affect future designs of integrated circuits," said David Muller, Cornell University professor of applied and engineering physics, and co-director of Kavli Institute for Nanoscale Science at Cornell. "The techniques we developed look deeply, as well as in and around the structures, to give a much clearer picture so complex processing and integration issues can be addressed."

The scientists understand that the detailed structure and connectivity of these nanopores have profound control on the mechanical strength, chemical stability and reliability of these dielectrics. With today's announcement, researches now have a nearly atomic understanding of the three-dimensional pore structures of low-k materials required to solve these problems.

Welcome to the atomic world: SRC and Cornell researchers were able to devise a method to obtain 3-D images of the pores using electron tomography, leverages imaging advances used for CT scans and MRIs in the medical field, says Scott List, director of interconnect and packaging sciences at SRC, at Research Triangle Park, N.C. "Sophisticated software extracts 3-D images from a series of 2-D images taken at multiple angles. A 2-D picture is worth a thousand words, but a 3-D image at near atomic resolution gives the semiconductor industry new insights into scaling low-k materials for several additional technology nodes."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cornell University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Huolin Xin et al. Three-dimensional imaging of pore structures inside low- dielectrics. Applied Physics Letters, June 2, 2010 DOI: 10.1063/1.3442496

Cite This Page:

Cornell University. "First images of sub-nano pore structures captured." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 June 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100608092106.htm>.
Cornell University. (2010, June 9). First images of sub-nano pore structures captured. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100608092106.htm
Cornell University. "First images of sub-nano pore structures captured." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100608092106.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

UN Joint Mission Starts Removing Landmines in Cyprus

UN Joint Mission Starts Removing Landmines in Cyprus

AFP (Apr. 23, 2014) The UN mission in Cyprus (UNFICYP) led a mine clearance demonstration on Wednesday in the UN-controlled buffer zone where demining operations are being conducted near the Cypriot village of Mammari. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Air Force: $4.2B Saved from Grounding A-10s

Air Force: $4.2B Saved from Grounding A-10s

AP (Apr. 23, 2014) Speaking about the future of the United States Air Force, Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh says the choice to divest the A-10 fleet was logical and least impactful. (April 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jets Fuel Jump in Boeing's Revenue

Jets Fuel Jump in Boeing's Revenue

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 23, 2014) A sharp rise in revenue for commercial jets offset a decline in Boeing's defense business. And a big increase in deliveries lifted profitability. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is North Korea Planning Nuclear Test #4?

Is North Korea Planning Nuclear Test #4?

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) South Korean officials say North Korea is preparing to conduct another nuclear test, but is Pyongyang just bluffing this time? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins