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Vampires Beware: New IBM Project Aims to Slay Standby Energy

Photo: Olaru Radian-Alexandru

IBM has partnered with the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne in Switzerland in a project to increase energy efficiency of devices and reduce consumption of standby power.

Called Project Steeper, the initiative aims to increase active use efficiency by a factor of ten and virtually eliminate standby power using tunnel field effect transistors and semiconducting nanowires. The EU-funded project will also involve researchers from the Universities of Bologna, Dortmund, Udine and Pisa, along with other commercial partners.

“Power dissipation has become one of the major challenges for today’s electronics, particularly as the number of devices used by businesses and consumers multiplies globally,” said Dr. Heike Riel, leader of the nanoscale electronics group at IBM Research in Zurich. “By applying our collective research in TFETs with semiconducting nanowires, we aim to significantly reduce the power consumption of the basic building blocks of integrated circuits affecting the smallest consumer electronics to massive, supercomputers.”

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