After Hours

Scientists develop atom-sized radio

Scientists at the University of California (Irvine) demonstrate a working radio built from carbon nanotubes that is about 1,000 times smaller than present day radios.

Scientists at the University of California (Irvine) demonstrate a working radio built from carbon nanotubes that is about 1,000 times smaller than present day radios.

An excerpt from Wired:

"People have been working on nanoelectronics for many years, and there have been advances at the device level on switches and wires," said Burke, who reported his findings in the November 14 issue of the American Chemical Society's Nano Letters. This work takes a step towards showing nanoelectronics in systems."

Peter Burke, the professor who helped develop the radio, added that the nano component in the radio is the demodulator that converts the radio signals to sound. The Wired link has a video, as well.

Nanotechnology is projected as the next generation of miniaturization, but several hurdles remain in getting products into the market, since manufacturing at the nano-scale level is a completely different ball game. The problem is that designing components at the atomic level implies near perfect manufacturing assemblies, which so far has been a far call.

Still, for the continued miniaturization of components as we know it, nanotechnology does appear as the future. The only question left is when will we see it?

More information:

Radio Nano calling, testing 1,2,3,4 (NY Times)

'World's smallest radio' unveiled (BBC)

The incredible shrinking radio (LiveScience)

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