Design007 Magazine

PCBD-June2017

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June 2017 • The PCB Design Magazine 71 The list of substances covered by the com- prehensive REACH regulation is continually being updated and full implementation is not expected to be completed for quite a number of years yet. To make sure our company is fully up to date with developments, we have estab- lished a REACH task force within Electrolube that works with our raw material suppliers and our customers to ensure full compliance with the regulation at every stage. Over the last 20 years, various universities have conducted a lot of research into the way polymers age under a range of conditions, and how their various physical properties change over time. This has led to a better understanding of how resins behave in the longer term and has enabled us to specify appropriate resin systems and ensure that the products containing them will continue to function as intended over their design life and—increasing being demanded by our customers these days—well beyond. So, what can we expect over the next 20 years? Prediction is proverbially a fool's occu- pation but, as a company, we do have some insights into the future needs of our custom- ers. Looking forward, we believe there will be more demand for very high-performance resins that can tolerate higher continuous operating temperatures (180°C and greater), while being more resistant to thermal and physical shock and chemical attack. We are also considering in- creasing the sustainability of our resins. We have products now that deliver these properties, but there's still plenty of research and development to do to "future-proof" our resins portfolio, so we can continue to stay one step ahead and provide advanced solutions when our customers need new resin solutions the most, in keeping with the rapid changes of the market. PCBDESIGN Alistair Little is technical director of Electrolube's Resins Division. RESINS PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE A researcher with the Erik Jonsson School of Engi- neering and Computer Science at UT Dallas has de- signed a novel computing system made solely from car- bon that might one day replace the silicon transistors that power today's electronic devices. "The concept brings together an assortment of ex- isting nanoscale technologies and combines them in a new way," said Dr. Joseph S. Friedman, assistant profes- sor of electrical and computer engineering at UT Dallas. The resulting all-carbon spin logic proposal, pub- lished by lead author Friedman and several collabora- tors in the June 5 edition of the online journal Nature Communications, is a comput- ing system that Friedman be- lieves could be made smaller than silicon transistors, with in- creased performance. Today's electronic devices are powered by transistors, which are tiny silicon structures that rely on negatively charged electrons moving through the silicon, forming an electric current. Transistors be- have like switches, turning current on and off. In addition to carrying a charge, electrons have another property called spin, which relates to their magnetic properties. In recent years, engineers have been investigating ways to exploit the spin characteristics of electrons to create a new class of transistors and devices called "spintronics." Friedman's all-carbon, spintronic switch functions as a logic gate that relies on a basic tenet of electro- magnetics: As an electric current moves through a wire, it creates a magnetic field that wraps around the wire. Because the communication between each of the graphene nanoribbons takes place via an electro- magnetic wave, instead of the physical movement of electrons, Friedman expects that communication will be much faster, with the potential for terahertz clock speeds. Engineer Unveils New Spin on Future of Transistors with Novel Design

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