One of the constant challenges faced by the semiconductor industry is to make microchips smaller, faster, and more powerful, and more energy-efficient. Now IBM claims to have developed the world’s smallest chip. The company said that the 2-nanometer microchip is the most powerful chip yet developed. Most computer chips these days generally are 7 nanometers or 10-nanometer process technology. There are few manufactures that are even developing 5-nanometer chips. The lower the number, the more advanced processor it would be. Now IBM has developed a chip that uses 2-nanometer process technology. This is nothing less than a new era for the components used to power consumer durables like smartphones, appliances, and even supercomputers.
Commenting on the development, IBM Research director Dario Gil said that “there are very few technologies or technological breakthroughs that can be helpful for one and all. But this is an example of one.” The very basic concept of improving the performance of any chip is to increase the number of transistors without increasing the overall size of the chip. Transistors are the core elements of chips and process data. The new chip developed by IBP is roughly the size of nails in our fingers. A 2-nanometer chip contains around 50 billion transistors. The size of each transistor is almost equal to two strands of DNA.
Vice president of IBM hybrid cloud research Mukesh Khare said that more transistors in a chip mean it will allow more innovations related to artificial intelligence. According to the company, the chip can have 45 percent higher performance. This is when it will consume about 75 percent lower energy than commonly used advanced 7-nanometer chips. “Every time when we experience that our smartphone is performing better or the computers and even cars get better, it happens because transistors got better and this chip has many transistors. When used in phones, it can increase the performance of batteries four times; and laptops could be much faster. Above all, this will also help in slashing the carbon footprints of data centers.