Remember when Google Street View only allowed you to explore streets? Since its launch in 2007, the service has been expanded to include things like coral reefs, hiking trails and the Amazon River. In its latest "off-road" adventure, however, Google Maps has thought smaller – it's used miniaturized Street View cameras to visually map a model railroad.
electronics miniaturization heads towards a theoretical physical limit in the
tens of nanometers, new methods of manufacturing are required to produce
transistors, diodes, and other fundamental electronic components. In this vein, a new range of molecule-sized
devices have been created in the laboratory, though with varying results in
terms of efficiency and practicality. Now a group of researchers from Berkeley
Lab and Columbia University claims to have created the highest-performing,
single-molecule diode ever made, which is said to be 50 times better in
performance and efficiency than anything previously produced.
Researchers from Germany, Japan and the United States have managed to create a tiny, reliable transistor assembled from a single molecule and a dozen additional atoms. The transistor reportedly operates so precisely that it can control the flow of single electrons, paving the way for the next generation of nanomaterials and miniaturized electronics.