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Esprit Project 30960 - Q-SWITCH
Open LTR - 2nd phase (1st phase see project 20960 )
Electron Waveguides for Quantum-based Switching Applications

Keywords: Nanostructure, electron waveguide, semiconductor device, quantum interference

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The project objective is the realisation of semiconductor devices based on electron waveguides and with capability for low power fast switching. The waveguides consist of narrow nm-scale channels, confined by semiconductor hetero-interfaces. Quantum interference phenomena will govern the functionality. Small dimensions and high barriers introduce large lateral quantisation of electron states, permitting operation at elevated temperatures. Device concepts utilising electron wave transport in nm-scale waveguides are thus candidates for partial replacement and improvement of CMOS technology at the high performance end.

The manufacturing technology is expected to be compatible with already employed technologies, and a future circuit is likely to partially be based on HEMT and/or CMOS technology. Our achievements will be made directly available to European industry, in terms of direct access to technologies and through the supply of highly trained researchers in the field.

This project has gone through an assessment period during which crucial lithography, etching and growth technologies were consolidated by fabricating III-V-based quantum-point contacts with characteristic dimensions down to 50 nm. Coherent electron transport was observed at temperatures up to 30 K, demonstrating the validity of the concept. In the second phase we will manufacture and study electron waveguide devices of III-V materials, complemented by an initial study of the feasibility for such devices using Si/SiO2. For the measurement of device parameters at high frequencies, techniques for impedance matching will be developed. The Y-branch switch as well as resonant tunneling devices will be the primary objectives of the work.

Contact Point
Dr Lars Ledebo
Department of PhysicsLund University
Box 118
S-221 00 Lund

e-mail: (E-mail removed)

Start date: 1 January 1998
Duration: 36 months

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