Ten times tinier transistors

— 1:26 AM on November 23, 1999

Say that five times fast, pal. ZDNet reports on a new transistor developed at the University of California at Berkeley by Chenminu Hu. The new transistor, named "FinFET" is only ten percent the size of the smallest transistors developed up until now.

The breakthrough comes in the form of a new gate design. Instead of making the gate a flat conductor, it was created as a fork. The new design gives better control of the current flowing through the gate, allowing it to be created much smaller; only 18 nanometers long in this case. Hu hopes to cut the size down by another 50% with time.

Refreshingly, there are no plans to patent the discovery; Hu wants the design to be available for everyone's use. With developments like this, it sounds like Moore's Law is going to stick around a while longer.

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