Friday, May 04, 2007

US Patent 7211503 - Microscale to nanoscale electronics conversion using random interconnections

A variety of companies including Hewlett-Packard and Nanosys are working on using nanowires to form electronic memories, circuits and other devices. However, the processing used in forming the nanowires on a substrate (such as nanoimprint lithography, self-assembly, etc.) is very different from the processing (such as optical lithography) conventionally used in forming microscale wires and the two scales of wiring are thus usually formed in separate processing steps. Interconnection between microscale wires and nanowires thus requires new methodologies. This patent from HP proposes a microwire to nanowire addressing scheme based on randomly distributing nanowires across microwires and only using the portion of the nanowires achieving proper connections rather than trying to form the nanowires in a predetermined manner. Claim 1 reads:

1. A random microscale-to-nanoscale interface comprising: a number N of approximately parallel nanowires; a number M, where M>log.sub.2N, of approximately parallel microscale or sub-microscale address signal lines that are not parallel with respect to the N nanowires and that form a grid-like set of intersections with the N nanowires; and a random or pseudorandom distribution of interconnections within the grid-like set of intersections.

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