[Hardware] The market of ASICs (One GigaKey / Second?)

Elektron elektron_rc5 at yahoo.ca
Wed Aug 11 05:01:59 EDT 2004


On 11 Aug, 2004, at 14:59, jbass at dmsd.com wrote:

> Maybe 10K is a bit too cool, but the total system design for this
> toy is a little over 65KW, so *IF* I could cut it's power consumption
> and pick up some serious additional speed it might be an interesting
> experiment.
>
> With a careful cell layout, routing delays might not dominate.

It would probably melt (since that's about the cooling capacity of 10 
big air conditioners, but I'm not sure if you mean 17.5 KW). Depending 
on the power consumption for one chip, the biggest problem could be 
getting the heat off the chips before they melt.

> For a while I worked with MRI machines, and part of what
> was in the back of my head was that the metal layers might
> go supercon and cut the waste heat as is does in field
> magnets. Not sure where the cofficient of expansion would
> cause the die to fracture at the metal/semi bonds.

Last I checked, cooling silicon (and semiconductors in general) 
decreased its conductivity. It shouldn't cause anything to break, since 
everything's really thin.

The other problem is the high cost of keeping temperatures low enough 
for superconductivity to occur. Copper does not appear to be a 
superconductor, and I doubt you can deposit ceramic superconductors 
easily, either (a shame, since they can superconduct at over 100K). 
Lead (7K) and niobium (9K) are better choices. I also imagine that the 
transistors will still heat things up a bit.

If you have liquid nitrogen handy, you could see what happens if you 
dunk a transistor in it.

That said, my phone does work after sticking it in the freezer, though 
it seems to affect the LCD toggle times (which would be expected).

- Purr



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