Moores Law holds true

Intel is set to release research that proves that Moore's Law, that concerns processor power, will hold true for the next five to ten years, meaning processor speeds of up to 10GHz in the coming decade.

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By  Mark Sutton Published  December 13, 2000

Intel is set to release research that proves that Moore's Law, that concerns processor power, will hold true for the next five to ten years, meaning processor speeds of up to 10GHz in the coming decade.

Intel is set to prove that Moore’s Law will prove true for the next ten years, with the release of new research demonstrating that it is possible to create transistors elements that are just three atoms wide.

Moore’s Law, which states that the number of transistors on a chip can be doubled every 18-24 months, had previously been in some doubt, but the new research suggests that chips can theoretically be increased in size for the next five to ten years.

The research has been carried out at Intel’s Components Research Laboratory. Moore’s Law, formulated by Intel co-founder Gordon Moore, has proven true for the past thirty years, but concerns had arisen that silicon oxides would not work as such small levels led Moore himself to doubt the rule at the start of the nineties.

The smaller the transistors in a chip, the more transistors can be fitted on that chip and the more data can be processed.

At present most chips are manufactured using 0.18-micron elements, including the leading chip, Intel’s Pentium 4. This allows 42 million transistors on a chip, running at speeds of up to 1.5GHz.

The research proves that processors holding 400 million transistors, each one made up of elements just 0.07 microns thick (comprising an oxygen, a silicon and an oxygen atom) and running up to 10GHz are physically possible.

The research will be showcased by Gerald Marcyk, director of Intel’s Components Research Lab at the International Electronics Devices conference in San Francisco on Monday. Speaking about the discovery, Marcyk said: “The trend line is continuing. We are not hitting a brick wall.”

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