July 7, 2004 – General Electric Co. wants to carve a niche with carbon nanotubes.
GE Global Research in Niskayuna, N.Y., announced Wednesday it has developed carbon nanotube-based diodes, fundamental semiconductor devices that form the building blocks of transistors, computer chips and light-emitting diodes.
The work has been published in the July 5 edition of Applied Physics Letters.
Ji-Ung Lee, a scientist who works in the research center’s Nanotechnology Advanced Research Laboratory, developed the nanotube diode.
GE said the nanodiode offers the same performance as its silicon counterpart, but should be able to emit and detect light. Commercial applications, which could come within a decade, include more flexible and functional sensors for biothreat detection.
GE joins a list of other academic and industrial researchers working with carbon nanotubes in the emerging area of molecular electronics. Leaders include IBM, Hewlett-Packard and Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands.