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Hardware Science Technology

Silicene Discovered: Single-layer Silicon That Could Beat Graphene To Market 67

MrSeb writes "Numerous research groups around the world are reporting that they have created silicene, a one-atom-thick hexagonal mesh of silicon atoms — the silicon equivalent of graphene. You will have heard a lot about graphene, especially with regard to its truly wondrous electrical properties, but it has one rather major problem: It doesn't have a bandgap, which makes it very hard to integrate into existing semiconductor processes. Silicene, on the other hand, is theorized to have excellent electrical properties, while still being compatible with silicon-based electronics (abstract). For now, silicene has only been observed (with a scanning tunneling electron microscope), but the next step is to grow a silicene film on an insulating substrate so that its properties can be properly investigated."
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Silicene Discovered: Single-layer Silicon That Could Beat Graphene To Market

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  • Re:And now? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tocsy ( 2489832 ) on Monday April 30, 2012 @02:44PM (#39848273)

    None of those have the same crystal structure as carbon or silicon, which both form diamond lattices due to being group IV materials. As someone who works with silicon/gallium arsenide semiconductors and crystal formation, I think this is pretty exciting news. There's a large difference between observing something and making it work the way you want it to, though, so my guess is it'll be a while before silicene can be properly studied, let alone used in commercial semiconductor devices.

  • by Sarten-X ( 1102295 ) on Monday April 30, 2012 @03:18PM (#39848837) Homepage

    Are all headlines nowadays conjured up by a dedicated company full of marketing types?

    Of course not. There are several companies in this thriving industry, each taking up a particular niche. There's one for the "everything's racist" stories, some for "mediocrity is amazing", a few for "this is the best/worst/biggest/smallest/oldest/newest thing ever (since that other one)", a couple whose shtick is "everything is interesting to nerds because it will change the world", and so on...

    Guess which website you're on now?

  • Re:And now? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 30, 2012 @04:10PM (#39849603)

    Erm - it's *you* who should learn chemistry. If you believe that sp2 hybridized graphite (excellent conductor, very soft) and sp3 hybridized diamond (insulator, very hard) have similar properties just because it's the same group IV element, then - well... - sorry to say... - but you are full of shit.

    And your senseless mumbo-jumbo on conductivity sadly just proves it.

  • Re:Physical Limits (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mhajicek ( 1582795 ) on Monday April 30, 2012 @06:07PM (#39851091)

    So late this decade or next decade at the latest Moore's law is dead.

    Unless someone comes up with something clever again.

Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later. -- F. Brooks, "The Mythical Man-Month"