Speed is a fundamental factor to consider concerning the process of data transfer and computing with a positive correlation between the shift of electrons to conduct electricity and the efficiency of the respective devices. Physicists have successfully managed to improve the speed of electrons transportation at a very high speed of less than one quadrillionth of a second (femtosecond speeds) in a practical setting.
In this experimental setup, light waves are used to manipulate electrons with light waves which are specifically designed and created by an ultrafast laser. Even though it’s too early to be excited about this concept being integrated into our devices, it is a promising endeavor that may be realized soon.
Currently, the booting process of the fastest devices in the world is at a speed of a trillionths seconds (picoseconds) which is a thousandth of a femtosecond meaning we are still 1000 times slower than the discovery. The results obtained from this approach showed that electric current was switched at around 600 attoseconds (1 femtosecond is equal to 1000 attoseconds).
Alfred Leitenstorfer, a scientist from the University of Konstanz in Germany, claims that this new venture could be the distant future of all electronic devices. This claim follows the success of the practice setting, which managed to reach the attosecond range of electron transfer with the use of single-cycle light pulses.
To generate a measurable current, the team using a laser managed to push out a hundredth million single-cycle light pulses every single second. This experimental setup used a nanoscale gold antenna in a bowtie shape to concentrate the electric field pulse in a gap of 6000 millionths of a meter in length.
Consequently, the researchers were able to switch electric currents at extremely high speed, which was less than half an oscillation period of the electric field of the light pulses following the special experimental setup. Historically, it has been a challenge to go beyond the limitations of the silicon semiconductor conventional tech but as it has turned out, it’s possible to use fast oscillations of light to improve the speed of electrons.
The integration of light and electrons can work in diverse ways, and by use of this new technology, it can have a positive impact on the next generation of computers. Using plasmonic nanoparticles and optoelectronic gadgets it’s possible to eliminate the restrictions of current computer systems since the new projected tech uses light pulses to manipulate electrons at super-small scales.