IBM’s Albany research laboratory has recently come out with the news that it has created a microchip of only 2 nanometers in dimensions. This could mean a massive shift for the computer processor industry.
At a mere 2 nm, IBM’s new chip would be the smallest microchip ever made. Its small size coupled with its capabilities would have ramifications we are still grappling to comprehend.
IBM states that the new 2nm microchip surpasses the current 7nm microchip with a 45% improvement in performance. A current microchip that is already regarded as high-performing. The new chip also has greater energy efficiency.
According to IBM blog statements, the new 2nm microchip can meet current microchips’ performance capabilities but only at 75% less power consumption.
These two performance statistics combined can mean a great deal in terms of application. Mobile phones using the new microchips could have four times the battery life. Such devices would only need charging after four days have passed.
This greater power efficiency and charge life would be on top of the improved computer capabilities. Not to mention the potential ramifications for larger data centers.
Data centers that make use of the new 2nm microchip could see a massive reduction in their carbon footprints. Such data centers are responsible for 1% of the energy used all around the world.
Laptops that incorporate the new microchips could potentially see incredible increases in their performance in regard to application processing, better language translation, and internet access speed.
The new microchips could also translate into faster object detection and reaction time for the automated systems of self-driving cars.
Darío Gill, IBM’s Director of Research as well as SVP, stated, “The IBM innovation reflected in this new 2nm chip is essential to the entire semiconductor and IT industry.”
He went on to say “It is the product of IBM’s approach of taking on hard challenges and a demonstration of how breakthroughs can result from sustained investments and a collaborative R&D ecosystem approach.”
Gill is likely referring to how IBM Research Albany cultivates collaborative research and development with partners in both the private and public sectors for the advancement of semiconductor technology.
This technological breakthrough comes at a time of ever-increasing demand for not only new devices but better and faster ones. Despite being a little bigger than a thumbnail the new 2nm microchip can contain 50 billion transistors. The new design owes its origins to IBM’s nanosheet technology.