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  1. 17 Jun '13 08:45
    This appears to me to be a sign that spintronics is about to become of age and, if true, this would mean soon our computers would be using up virtually no electric power at all!:

    http://www.spintronics-info.com/nec-and-tohoku-university-developed-spintronics-text-search-chip-cuts-power-reduction-99

    -but I wounder if this seems a bit to good to be true?
  2. 17 Jun '13 20:00 / 8 edits
    Originally posted by humy
    This appears to me to be a sign that spintronics is about to become of age and, if true, this would mean soon our computers would be using up virtually no electric power at all!:

    http://www.spintronics-info.com/nec-and-tohoku-university-developed-spintronics-text-search-chip-cuts-power-reduction-99

    -but I wounder if this seems a bit to good to be true?
    Misprint; Just noticed I said "...would be using up virtually no electric power at all..." which makes no sense because "power" in physics is not something that is "used up".
    that should have just simply been:
    "....would use virtually no electrical power at all..."


    Anyway, anyone here enthusiastic about spintronics like I am?
    Does anyone have an opinion on about roughly how long before most of our newly manufactured computers will be spintronically orientated?
    - I am personally finding it very hard to get any real sense at all on about how long it is taking given current progress.
  3. Standard member RJHinds
    The Near Genius
    18 Jun '13 04:32
    Originally posted by humy
    This appears to me to be a sign that spintronics is about to become of age and, if true, this would mean soon our computers would be using up virtually no electric power at all!:

    http://www.spintronics-info.com/nec-and-tohoku-university-developed-spintronics-text-search-chip-cuts-power-reduction-99

    -but I wounder if this seems a bit to good to be true?
    The idea that computers will use virtually no electric power does sound too good to be true. I am not sure that is what is being implied by spintronics.

    The Instructor
  4. 18 Jun '13 08:11 / 5 edits
    Originally posted by RJHinds
    The idea that computers will use virtually no electric power does sound too good to be true. I am not sure that is what is being implied by spintronics.

    The Instructor
    The idea that computers will use virtually no electric power does sound too good to be true.

    That is not what I meant. It is just a matter of time before, thanks to spintronics, inevitably, computers will use virtually no electric power. It is just a question of when and not if -one years time? ten years time? 50 years time?
    What I meant of is I wonder if this seems a bit to good to be true that spintronic computers and their low power consumption will become of age and be here VERY SOON?
    -I am getting impatient about this -I want it NOW.
    I am not sure that is what is being implied by spintronics.

    http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/spintronics

    spintronics means, rather than using electric CURRENT to carry digital signals down micro wires in micro electronics, the digital signals consist of electron SPIN on the form of electrons spinning on their own axis more in one rotation, say, anticlockwise relative to an electron spin detector, than in the opposite rotation. The whole point of making the signals in the form of spin rather than current is that it is vastly more energy efficient (at least about 100 fold more and could be in theory be made as much as ~10,000 fold more energy efficient!) with spin because, there is no electrical resistance that wastes energy while with current there is huge waste due to resistance. That is why spintronics will make computers use virtually no electric power.
    Spintronics also promises to increase the speed of computers by perhaps ~20 fold.
  5. Standard member mikelom
    Ajarn
    18 Jun '13 11:26
    http://www.spintronics-info.com/worlds-first-3d-spintronics-chip-developed-cambridge

    If it's from Cambridge Uni, UK, you can bet your bottom quid it's already being developed in sync with latest techno already.

    -m.
  6. 18 Jun '13 11:42 / 4 edits
    Originally posted by mikelom
    http://www.spintronics-info.com/worlds-first-3d-spintronics-chip-developed-cambridge

    If it's from Cambridge Uni, UK, you can bet your bottom quid it's already being developed in sync with latest techno already.

    -m.
    That's brilliant news! (which is a few months old but somehow I missed it)
    But one note of small caution; they used some atoms of ruthenium to make it which is a very rare expensive chemical element. If the final commercial products that come from spintronic research are to be reasonably priced and economic, they really need to avoid using any really rare chemical elements and use cheaper alternatives. But I am sure they will (eventually) because they cannot possibly be that stupid!
  7. 18 Jun '13 12:19
    Originally posted by humy
    spintronics means, rather than using electric CURRENT to carry digital signals down micro wires in micro electronics, the digital signals consist of electron SPIN on the form of electrons spinning on their own axis more in one rotation, say, anticlockwise relative to an electron spin detector, than in the opposite rotation.
    My understanding is that:
    1. Spin is not actually rotation, but a quantum property.
    2. Spintronics usage spin in storage, not transmission, and because normal computers use power to maintain storage (in RAM and CPI) whereas spintronics does not, it saves power.
    This is equivalent to using a thumb drive as your RAM, except the technology in your thumb drive is much slower than spintronics.
  8. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    18 Jun '13 13:57
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    My understanding is that:
    1. Spin is not actually rotation, but a quantum property.
    2. Spintronics usage spin in storage, not transmission, and because normal computers use power to maintain storage (in RAM and CPI) whereas spintronics does not, it saves power.
    This is equivalent to using a thumb drive as your RAM, except the technology in your thumb drive is much slower than spintronics.
    Is there data on how fast the latest chips are in memory read/writes?
  9. 18 Jun '13 15:11 / 6 edits
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    My understanding is that:
    1. Spin is not actually rotation, but a quantum property.
    2. Spintronics usage spin in storage, not transmission, and because normal computers use power to maintain storage (in RAM and CPI) whereas spintronics does not, it saves power.
    This is equivalent to using a thumb drive as your RAM, except the technology in your thumb drive is much slower than spintronics.
    1. Spin is not actually rotation, but a quantum property.

    yes, I know. I know that 'spin' is not literally physical rotation in the Newtonian mechanical sense like I deliberately implied.
    I just wanted to keep it simple for RJHinds.
    Spintronics usage spin in storage, not transmission,

    Actually, it can be used in both albeit in subtly different ways:

    http://www.bit-tech.net/news/hardware/2012/08/14/ibm-spintronics/1
    “...
    Spintronics, a portmanteau of 'spin,' 'transport' and 'electronics,' promises to revolutionise the semiconductor market. Spintronic components use the spin of the electron to store a zero or a one, rather than the charge of the electron. The result is the storage and transmission of data - and even calculations - with no energy dissipation, and a resulting reduction in the power required
    (my emphasis)
    ...”

    And it would be just a matter of time before it WILL be used for both and we would have microchips, including both microprocessors and memory chips, that are 100% spintronic (but really hope it would be ~5 years time and not ~50 years time!!!) In the case of where and when it is used for transmission and not memory, the spintronic signal can only be transmitted through a micro wire for a few micrometers at most. But, by careful layout of circuitry to work with that limitation, that is enough distance in theory to make a cpu or a whole microprocessor chip completely 100% spintronic.

    I have also have heard of the possibility of spintronics being potentially used for power transfer but have no understanding of how that would work nor the point of doing it that way (perhaps it saves energy again? -don't know) nor whether it would be any better than normal methods of power transfer.
  10. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    18 Jun '13 16:05
    Originally posted by humy
    1. Spin is not actually rotation, but a quantum property.

    yes, I know. I know that 'spin' is not literally physical rotation in the Newtonian mechanical sense like I deliberately implied.
    I just wanted to keep it simple for RJHinds.
    Spintronics usage spin in storage, not transmission,

    Actually, it can be used in ...[text shortened]... -don't know) nor whether it would be any better than normal methods of power transfer.
    Any idea of what exactly is the electron doing that we ascribe the notion of spin to, but it is not spin? Could it be analogous to the direction of electric fields?
  11. 18 Jun '13 16:22 / 3 edits
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    Any idea of what exactly is the electron doing that we ascribe the notion of spin to, but it is not spin? Could it be analogous to the direction of electric fields?
    Normally, on a macroscopic scale, when you get some electric charge physically rotating around some axis of rotation, such as electric current in the form of negatively charged electrons moving around in a coil of wire around an electromagnet, you always get a magnetic field generated by that. And normally you don't get an electric field without it being directly caused by some electric charge spinning around something somewhere. But there is a magnetic field associated with each electron and at a given moment an electron has a magnetic 'north' and 'south' pole. It is therefore natural to intuitively assume via extrapolating from the macroscopic relationship between moving charges and magnetize, that this is due to the electron having a negative electric charge and it physically spinning on its axes to make that charge physically spin thus assume that its magnetic field is as a result of negative charge physically spinning round. But this is an unsafe extrapolation and assumption for we have no evidence that it is literally physically spinning around its own axis and what happens on the quantum scale is often very different from what happens on the macroscopic scale.
    The way I see it, picturing it as electrons as actually physically spinning on their own axis is just a convenient way of thinking about it but not one to be taken literally.
    I am not sure about this but I think that may mean you could call that picture of a physical spin of the electrons around their own axis as an "analogy"? -not sure if, strictly speaking, that is the wrong usage of the word.
  12. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    18 Jun '13 18:22
    Originally posted by humy
    Normally, on a macroscopic scale, when you get some electric charge physically rotating around some axis of rotation, such as electric current in the form of negatively charged electrons moving around in a coil of wire around an electromagnet, you always get a magnetic field generated by that. And normally you don't get an electric field without it being direct ...[text shortened]... is as an "analogy"? -not sure if, strictly speaking, that is the wrong usage of the word.
    Are these spintronics devices running at room temperature? I think the first experiments with spins was near 10K or less.
  13. 18 Jun '13 19:54 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    Are these spintronics devices running at room temperature? I think the first experiments with spins was near 10K or less.
    some of the ones coming out of the lab are room temperature even though the research always seems to start with then only working at very cold temperatures. More and more of experimental spintronic devises are becoming developed that work at room temperature and there is no theoretical reason why practical room temperature spintronics couldn't be developed so fortunately I don't think that would prove to be an issue.
    The only big issue I fear might exist is; how long before we have practical cost-effective spintronics in the real world rather than just confined to research and in the lab? -I just hope not very long.
  14. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    19 Jun '13 01:05
    Originally posted by humy
    some of the ones coming out of the lab are room temperature even though the research always seems to start with then only working at very cold temperatures. More and more of experimental spintronic devises are becoming developed that work at room temperature and there is no theoretical reason why practical room temperature spintronics couldn't be developed so f ...[text shortened]... e real world rather than just confined to research and in the lab? -I just hope not very long.
    Yes, using standard semiconductor processes, that would really make it real.