Electronics & Software

Semiconductors & ICs

Review the latest advances and technical briefs in Semiconductor and Integrated Circuit Systems (ICS) technologies essential to Design Engineers. Find new products and applications in semiconductors, electronics, electronic components, electronic circuits, integrated circuits, and ICS.

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Sub-Nanosecond, Compact, Low-Power Time-Interval Measurement

This innovation is a sub-nanosecond time-interval measurement that is compact and inexpensive, implemented in a field-programmable gate array (FPGA). Currently, high-speed count ers or semi-custom or custom ASICs (application specific integrated circuits) are used for time-interval...

Briefs: Software
CoolSPICE: SPICE Simulator for Cryogenic Electronics

Accurate assessment of circuits at cold temperatures is extremely difficult due to lack of models and tools that can simulate circuit behavior at cryogenic temperatures. A library of cryogenic temperature models was built, as well as a circuit simulator that can use those models and simulate...

News: Electronics & Computers
Bending Light with a Tiny Chip

Imagine that you are in a meeting with coworkers or at a gathering of friends. You pull out your cell phone to show a presentation or a video on YouTube. But you don't use the tiny screen; your phone projects a...

Scientists at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) have demonstrated for the first time that one can electrically access the remarkable properties predicted for a...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Metal-Assisted Fabrication of Biodegradable Porous Silicon Nanostructures

Porous silicon nanowires are fabricated by two-step, metal-assisted electroless chemical etching of p-type or n-type silicon wafers. This method, in combination with nanolithography or nanopatterning, can be applied to fabricate porous silicon nanostructures of different...

A high-temperature-capable widebandgap semiconductor power module package, coupled with a new high-temperature- capable bonding process...

News: Semiconductors & ICs
Head-Mounted Display Embeds an Augmented Reality Chip

Researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) developed K-Glass, a wearable, hands-free head-mounted display (HMD).

Unlike virtual reality which replaces the real world with a computer-simulated environment, augmented reality (AR) incorporates digital data...

News: Electronics & Computers
Engineers Create Transparent Semiconductors

Teams from Stanford and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln have collaborated to make thin, transparent semiconductors that could become the foundation for cheap, high-performance displays.

The researchers used their new process to make organic thin-film transistors with electronic characteristics...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Flexible Microstrip Circuits for Superconducting Electronics

Flexible circuits with superconducting wiring atop polyimide thin films are being studied to connect large numbers of wires between stages in cryogenic apparatus with low heat load. The feasibility of a full microstrip process, consisting of two layers of superconducting material...

Four application specific integrated circuits (ASICs) that provide sensing, actuation, and power conversion capabilities for distributed control in a high-temperature (over 200...

Techs for License: Semiconductors & ICs
Low-Loss Dielectric Materials Improve PC Boards

Low-loss dielectric materials are available. The hydrocarbon- based, fiber-reinforced composite sheets can be applied to printed circuit boards and IC chip packaging. The material has a very low dielectric constant and low dissipation factor up to GHz range frequencies, and is advantageous for...

Part 1 of this article, which appeared in the August 2013 issue of NASA Tech Briefs, dealt with ON-state characterization of high power semiconductors (link to...

News: Semiconductors & ICs
NASA Rocket Mission Will Predict Earth's Electrical Storms

A NASA-funded sounding rocket mission will launch from an atoll in the Pacific. The mission will help scientists better understand and predict the electrical storms in Earth's upper atmosphere. Storms interfere with satellite communication and global positioning signals.

News: Semiconductors & ICs
Researchers Measure Near-Field Behavior of Semiconductor Microparticles

Recent progress in the engineering of plasmonic structures has enabled new kinds of nanometer-scale optoelectronic devices as well as high-resolution optical sensing.

News: Semiconductors & ICs
New Technique Monitors Semiconductor Surface as it is Etched

University of Illinois researchers have a new low-cost method to carve delicate features onto semiconductor wafers using light – and watch as it happens. The team’s new technique can monitor a semiconductor’s surface as it is etched, in real time, with nanometer resolution. It...

Researchers from the University of Toronto (U of T) and King Abdullah University of Science & Technology (KAUST) have made a breakthrough in the development of colloidal quantum dot...

News: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Detecting Contaminants in Water

Many organic contaminants in the air and in drinking water need to be detected at very low-level concentrations. Research published by the laboratory of Prashant V. Kamat, the John A. Zahm Professor of Science...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Thermally Resilient, Broadband Optical Absorber From UV to IR Derived From Carbon Nanostructures

Optical absorber coatings have been developed from carbon-based paints, metal blacks, or glassy carbon. However, such materials are not truly black and have poor absorption characteristics at longer wavelengths. The blackness of such coatings is...

Briefs: Information Technology
Verilog-A Device Models for Cryogenic Temperature Operation of Bulk Silicon CMOS Devices

Verilog-A based cryogenic bulk CMOS (complementary metal oxide semiconductor) compact models are built for state-of-the-art silicon CMOS processes. These models accurately predict device operation at cryogenic temperatures down to 4 K. The models are...

Making use of the force generated by magnetic repulsion, Georgia Tech researchers have developed a new technique for measuring the adhesion strength between thin films of...

An international team of researchers has developed a process that improves the efficiency of generating electric power using molecular structures extracted from plants. The system taps into photosynthetic processes...

University of Illinois researchers have developed a method to chemically etch patterned arrays in the semiconductor gallium arsenide - used in solar cells, lasers, light-emitting diodes (LEDs), field...

News: Semiconductors & ICs
Battery-Less Chemical Detector Utilizes Semiconductor Nanowires

Lawrence Livermore researchers have developed a nanosensor that relies on semiconductor nanowires rather than traditional batteries as a power source. The device overcomes the power requirement of traditional sensors and is simple, highly sensitive, and can detect various molecules...

A Northwestern University research team has developed a new material that absorbs a wide range of wavelengths and could lead to more efficient and less expensive solar technology. The researchers used...

Videos: Electronics & Computers
Computers that Mimic the Brain

INSIDER reader Kenneth Polcak submitted a "Question of the Week" to his fellow design engineer pros:

IBM has recently developed prototypes of energy-efficient computer chips that emulate the synapses, neurons, and learning functions of the human brain. IBM's Systems of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
MOSFET Switching Circuit Protects Shape Memory Alloy Actuators

A small-footprint, full surface-mount-component printed circuit board employs MOSFET (metal-oxide-semi-conductor field-effect transistor) power switches to switch high currents from any input power supply from 3 to 30 V.

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Optimized FPGA Implementation of Multi-Rate FIR Filters Through Thread Decomposition

Multi-rate finite impulse response (MRFIR) filters are among the essential signal-processing components in space-borne instruments where finite impulse response filters are often used to minimize nonlinear group delay and finite-precision effects. Cascaded...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Circuit for Communication Over Power Lines

Many distributed systems share common sensors and instruments along with a common power line supplying current to the system. A communication technique and circuit has been developed that allows for the simple inclusion of an instrument, sensor, or actuator node within any system containing a common...

A proposed integrated circuit would translate (1) a pair of input signals having a low differential potential and a possibly high common-mode potential into (2) a pair of output signals...

Videos