Researchers: Future Computers to Use 1 Million Times Less Energy

06 July of 2011 by

apple ii e Researchers: Future Computers to Use 1 Million Times Less Energy

Emerging computer technology that would use magnetic microprocessors instead of silicon-based chips has the potential to consume 1 million times less energy per operation than existing computers, according to an analysis byUniversity of California, Berkeley researchers. Unlike existingmicroprocessor technology, which relies on electric currents thatgenerate enormous amounts of wasted heat, the new technology, currentlyunder development, would instead use closely packed magnetic chips tostore and process information that would not require any movingelectrons, the researchers say. According to their paper, published inthe journal Physical Review Letters, such microprocessor chipshave the potential to dissipate only 18 millielectron volts of energyper operation at room temperature — or the minimum allowed by the second law of thermodynamics, known as the Landauer limit. “Even if we couldget within one order of magnitude, a factor of 10, of the Landauerlimit, it would represent a huge reduction in energy consumption forelectronics,” said Jeffrey Bokor, a UC Berkeley professor and codirector of the Center for Energy Efficient Electronics Science, which is trying to develop magnetic computers. 

Original Article on Yale Environment 360

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