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Emerging Technology - Essay Example

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One problem that has challenged the all computer circuit and telecommunication system is the integration of electronics and light technologies. In today's world where nanotechnology is on the lips of every tech-geek, normal consumers demand smaller, better and faster systems…
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Emerging Technology
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Download file to see previous pages Chipsets used for example in quantum computers integrate the usability of light and electronics with the help of metamaterials and Plasmonics. [5]
Artificial metamaterials are metastructures made of small units of two or more distinct materials arranged in a precise pattern. This confers unique properties on the material, like reflection or selective propagation of certain wavelengths of light. An interesting consequence of this is that materials with a negative refractive index have been constructed that can focus light much more finely than conventional lenses and can also be used for energy harvesting [5]
The study and construction of metamaterials has given a new direction to the field of Plasmonics, the study of Plasmons. These are small waves of electron density that are produced by using light. Using Plasmons, optical signals can be squeezed into very small wires. The induction of plasmons in metamaterials can induce extraordinary optical and magnetic properties in them. The plasmons are placed on top and bottom surfaces of the metamaterial, tying them together. This enables them to move as waves over very long distances through the layers, whereas most plasmon waves get attenuated after a short distance. So the metamaterial acts like a kind of 'plasmonic fibre' comparable to the optical fibres that bear light signals over long distances. ...
Together, these two developments can be used to envisage higher capacity optical data storage and telecom systems that are ultrafast, compact and highly integrated. [4]

The technology described above is in its development phases but as it is being developed, some advantages can already be reaped. The problem of communicating between the light and electric system of communication is partly solved by the Plasmonics. Plasmonic devices can possibly act as a natural interface with similar speed photonic devices and similar size electronic components to serve as the missing link between the two device technologies that currently have a difficult time communicating.
A plasmonic circuit can carry much more data over its network since the frequency of an optical signal is much higher than that of an electrical (400,000 gigahertz versus 60 hertz). [7] [9]
The device is not subject to resistance and capacitance effects that limit the data-carrying capacity of integrated circuits with electrical interconnects because electrical charge does not travel from one end of a plasmonic circuit to another. The electrons bunch together and spread apart rather than streaming in a single direction. [9]
The behavior of the plasmonics can be tuned according to a given need with ease. The rate at which they transmit the data can be altered by changing the geometry of perforations rather than having to develop a whole new composition of materials. [7]

Operating speeds and critical dimensions of various chip-scale device technologies, highlighting the strengths of the different technologies [6]

Eventually plasmonics may be able to completely solve this issue to give boost to nanoscale functionality and become the next wave of chip-scale technology.
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