Computer chip breakthrough uses sound to transmit data

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Jul 10, 2022 , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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Scientists at Harvard College have created a new kind of chip, transmitting data through seem waves.

Computer chips and circuits send out and procedure facts by modulating a medium, typically employing electrons, which are modulated by elements these types of as transistors to encode data as types and zeroes. 

Photonic chips, which modulate photons of light and send out them down waveguides to transmit data have beforehand been formulated, with the new acoustic chip operating in a similar way to photonic chips by applying seem waves as a substitute of light-weight waves. 

The Harvard group developed a modulator out of lithium niobate, switching its elasticity in reaction to an electric powered field and manufacturing acoustic waves. 

The modulator can command the phase, amplitude and frequency of the acoustic waves by means of cautious adjustment of the electric subject, encoding info just before sending it by way of waveguides. 

The group assert that the acoustic wave chips do not interfere with every other and interact efficiently with other sections of the methods they are applied in. 

With the 1st acoustic chip operational, the staff is aiming to create extra advanced acoustic wave circuits, investigating how to connect them to quantum laptop or computer parts these as superconducting qubits. 

Marko Loncar, senior creator, Harvard SEAS, commented: “Acoustic waves are promising as on-chip data carriers for both of those quantum and classical information processing but the growth of acoustic built-in circuits has been hampered by the incapacity to command acoustic waves in a low-decline, scalable method. 

“In this perform, we confirmed we can manage acoustic waves on an integrated lithium niobate platform, bringing us one step nearer to an acoustic integrated circuit.”

Photo credit rating: Linbo Shao/Harvard SEAS

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