'Atomtronics' may be the new 'electronics' | Science News



Support credible science journalism.

Subscribe to Science News today.


'Atomtronics' may be the new 'electronics'

Physicists report key step toward developing a new class of devices

3:13pm, February 11, 2011

Forget about wires, silicon and electricity. Physicists have developed a new type of circuit that is little more than a puff of gas dancing in laser beams. By choreographing the atoms of this ultracold gas to flow as a current that can be controlled and switched on and off, the scientists have taken a step toward building the world’s first “atomtronic” device.

Atomtronics is a young, small and mostly theoretical field based on the idea that atoms in unusual quantum states of matter may provide an alternative to the tried-and-true electron for making useful devices. The field’s proponents have drawn up blueprints for atomic versions of many traditional

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join the Society today or Log in.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content