IBM and Samsung have announced a new development in semiconductor design that they report will lengthen phone battery life significantly . The companies’ discovery is called Vertical Transport Field Effect Transistors — VTFET, for short — and is a new approach to stacking transistors vertically instead of horizontally.
With VTFET, current will run in an up-and-down flow pattern, rather than side-to-side, as transistors are built perpendicular to the surface of a chip.
In comparison to the FinFET design, VTFET “has the potential to reduce energy usage by 85 percent,” IBM reported, opening the door to future improvements such as “cell phone batteries that could go over a week without being charged” instead of only a few days.
IBM and Samsung cited the global chip shortage as their motivation to work on furthering semiconductor research and development.
“Today’s technology announcement is about challenging convention and rethinking how we continue to advance society and deliver new innovations that improve life, business and reduce our environmental impact,” said Dr. Mukesh Khare, Vice President of Hybrid Cloud and Systems at IBM Research.
“Given the constraints the industry is currently facing along multiple fronts, IBM and Samsung are demonstrating our commitment to joint innovation in semiconductor design and a shared pursuit of what we call ‘hard tech.’”
The compact design will help chip designers in the coming years as they try to fit more transistors into a given space and aid in reducing the carbon footprint of energy intensive processes, including crypto mining and data encryption.
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