Sayani Majumdar from Aalto University, Finland, and her colleagues, are designing a new way of storing IoT data. The solution requires a very low amount of power to work, and functions almost like the human brain.
The solution utilises organic thin films which can retain data for 10 years or longer, without requiring any kind of power, and are compatible with low voltages. The current transistors in computer chips aren’t expected to work in the future, and this new technology will attempt to provide a solution to that.
According to Majumdar, the innovative technology is advancing more rapidly than quantum computing. The way its energy-efficiency is achieved is to mimic how the biological human brain works, processing information through magnetic impulses.
In technical terms, these ferroelectric tunnel junctions employ a nano-scale hardware architecture that is suitable for industrial manufacture. One of its properties is that it can be inserted between two electrodes.
The junctions need a very low amount of power to work, less than five volts, to be specific. Furthermore, they have a wide range of compatibility when it comes to electrode materials, including silicon.
Majumdar added that the hydro-carbon materials found in the junctions will effectively reduce the amount of toxic heavy metals in electronics. According to her, it’s possible to produce thousands of junctions a day in room temperature conditions without them being negatively affected by water or oxygen in the air.
Finally, she concluded that we are no longer discussing transistors, but ‘memristors’, as she coined the term. Like the ones in the human brain, they are ideal for computation.