Sedetik.net - One bit of digital information can now be successfully stored in an atom. This result is a breakthrough in miniaturization of storage media and has the potential as a basis for quantum computing.
One bit of digital information can now be successfully stored in an individual atom, according to a study published in Nature. Current magnetic memory devices require about a million atoms to do the same. Andreas Heinrich, newly appointed Director of the Quantum Nanoscience Center, in the Basic Science Institute (IBS, South Korea), led a research effort that made this discovery at IBM Almaden Research Center (USA). This result is a breakthrough in miniaturization of storage media and has the potential as a basis for quantum computing.
The disk is coated with a metal magnet layer allows our computer to store files in bit form, each with a value of 1 or 0. Certain directions of magnetization correspond to 0 bits, the other direction to 1 bit. While the current small area of the disk, of about one million atoms, corresponds to every bit of digital information, this research goes far beyond and utilized in the smallest amount of material that can be used for the purpose of one atom.
In this study, scientists work with a tool called Scanning Tunneling Microscope (STM), which has a special tip that allows users to view and move individual atoms, as well as to apply an electric current pulse to them. They use this electrical pulse to change the direction of magnetization of individual holmium atoms. By doing so, the team can write 1 or 0 memory in a single holmium atom or two swap.
A quantum sensor, designed by the Heinrich team and currently unique throughout the world, is used to read memory stored in holmium atoms. It consists of an iron atom placed next to a holmium atom. Using this technique, as well as another one, called a magnetoresistance tunnel, the researchers could observe that the holmium maintains the same stable magnetic state for several hours.
Later, when the Heinrich team of researchers tried to use two holmium atoms instead of one, they made another surprising discovery. Placing a holmium atom even one nanometer apart does not affect their ability to store information individually. This comes as a surprise, because it is expected that the magnetic field of one atom will impact its neighbor. To put this scale in perspective, if the nanometer is detonated with the typical human hair diameter, the hair will have a diameter equivalent to the length of the school bus compared.
In this way, scientists can build a two-bit device with four possible types of memory: 1-1, 0-0, 1-0 and 0-1 clearly distinguished by the iron sensor.
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Moore's law predicts that the amount of data that can be stored on a microchip will double every 18 months and indeed this happens for decades. The last electronic device The model is always smaller and stronger than the previous one. However, as devices become smaller and smaller, because the atoms are so close to each other, the new quantum mixing properties begin to manifest and cause problems. The impossibility of keeping up with miniaturization is further, bringing in experts to talk about the death of Moore's Law.
Interestingly, holmium atoms seem to avoid this fate, for reasons still unknown. "There is no quantum mechanical effect between holmium atoms, and now we want to know why," suggests Heinrich. Holmium atoms can be arranged very closely together, so the storage density using this single-atom technique can be very high. He continued: "We have opened up new possibilities for quantum nanoscience by controlling individual atoms exactly as we want them, this research could spur innovation in commercial storage media that will expand the possibility of miniaturization of data storage."
Heinrich is one of the few scientists in the world using this tool to measure and change the properties of individual atoms. He plans to significantly expand this new research made at his IBS research center, located at Ewha Womans University in Seoul.
Thus the article on the world's smallest storage, thank you for reading our article. Hopefully useful, if any further questions you can leave comments below.
Source by Zonacerdas.
Source by Zonacerdas.
Single atom memory, the smallest storage medium in the world
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