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硅芯片后的下一个时代

This Is the End of the Silicon Chip, Here’s What’s Next

电子设备变得越来越小
Electronics keep getting smaller,
被称作晶体管的电子交换器功不可没
and it ’ s all thanks to electric switches called transistors.
在这些小东西取代电子管后
When these little fellas replaced vacuum tubes,
电脑也从房间那么大
computers went from the size of entire rooms
变成只需占房间一个角落的大小
to merely the corner of a room.
在此后的60多年里
In the 60-odd years since,
转换器一直在缩小尺寸
transistors have kept shrinking, scaling down and powering
也让电子设备可以原来越小
up our electronics with them.
一部分人认为我们现在遇到了瓶颈……
But many think we are hitting a choke point… what
假使我们不能把东西做得更小怎么办
if we can ’ t make anything smaller? !
晶体管有三个极:源极
Transistors have 3 terminals, a source,
漏极和栅极
a drain, and a gate.
电流先通过源极
Current flows from the source and,
如果栅极允许电子通过
if the gate allows the electrons to pass, out the
就到达漏极
drain.
知道计算机是如何用最基础的1和0两个数字进行编码的吗?
You know how computer code is ones and zeros at its most fundamental level? Well,
这就是它的工作原理
this is where that physically happens.
电流通过一个打开的栅极时会显示数字1
Current flowing through an open gate represents a one,
通过一个关闭的栅极时
a closed gate and no current represents
显示数字0
a zero.
将数以千万计的晶体管组合在一起
Pack thousands of these transistors together
它们就能够进行计算
and they can do calculations and act as a
成为计算机的大脑 即CPU
computer’s brain.
早期的计算机有数以千万计的转换器
Early computers had thousands of transistors,
但创造一个更好的“大脑”的方法是
but one way to build a better brain is to
将更多的晶体管压缩到一个芯片上
squeeze more transistors onto a chip,
如今的芯片上有数十亿的晶体管
and today ’ s chips could have billions.
这就意味着将晶体管整个压缩
That means scaling all the parts of a transistordown.
制造更小的晶体管不仅使其密度更高
Not only do smaller transistors allow for a higher density,
而且意味着它们可以
but it also means they can
更快地从“开”转到“关” 变小真的太方便了
switch from on to off faster, so small isgood!
目前 市场上可买到的芯片
Right now, commercially available chips
它们栅极的大小大多在14纳米至20纳米
typically have transistors with gates about 14 to 20
这取决于芯片种类
nm across, depending on the chip.
问题是 随着栅极越来越小
The problem is, as gates get thinner,
量子力学(物质世界微观粒子运动规律)
quantum mechanics ( the physics that govern tiny parts
开始起作用了
of atoms) start to come into play.
比如 如果栅极太窄
For example, if the gates are too
那这个栅极就不能阻止电子
thin then they won ’ t be able to stop electrons because
电子就可以通过
the electrons will tunnel through.
当然不是字面意思
Not in a literal sense,
这些电子不会像逃犯一样给栅极钻个孔
they don ’ t bore through the gate like an escaped convict.
它们以一种怪诞的量子意义上的方式穿过
They tunnel in the quirky quantum sense,
电子在栅极的一端消失
where essentially electrons disappear on one side
在栅极另一端重新出现
of the gate and reappear on the other.
安迪·杜弗兰说:你很忧伤吧!
Eat your heart out, Andy Dufresne.
如果电流传来栅极关闭
If the gate is supposed to be closed
代表数字0
to current – meaning a zero – and
但如果栅极无法关闭
it ain ’ t, that ’ s
就是一个很严重的问题
a big problem.
研究者预测硅栅极的极限是5纳米
Researchers predict that the lower limit for silicon gate is 5 nm,
到2021年 硅栅极也不可能
and by 2021 it won ’ t
经济有效地用于晶体管压缩
be economically efficient to keep shrinkingtransistors. So,
当物理法则阻碍了科技的进步时
where do we go when the laws
我们该如何前进呢
of physics stop the march of technological progress? Well,
好消息是 我们有其它改善现状的方法
the good news is, there are other ways of improving performance.
在使用目前转换器的基础上机器学习有助于开发更有效的算法
Machine learning could help develop more efficient algorithms to use with current transistors. Or,
或者 我们将目光投向使用光学栅极的光计算机
we could switch to light based computerswith optical gates. That,
性能可以达到普通计算机的20倍
could actually boost performance 20 fold,
尽管硬件还有些大
though the hardware is a bit larger. Or,
我们也许可以不再使用硅芯片
we could stop using silicon.
研究者已经成功研制出
Researchers have managed to make a transistor
带碳纳米管的二硫化钼晶体管
out of molybdenum disulfide with a carbon
它的栅极只有一纳米宽
nanotube gate thats just one nanometer across.
电子会在电子隧道里打转
It gets around electron tunneling
因为电子穿过二氧化钼的速度
because electrons don ’ t flow as fast through the
不如它穿过硅的速度快 但
molybdenum disulfide as they do through silicon. But,
批量生产很贵
mass production would probably be expensive,
因为做概念性验证很难
it was hard enough to make the proof of concept.
重点是即使我们不通过压缩也会有进展
The point is, progress can happen even ifwe can’t shrink.
曾经 初次使用晶体管时
Keep in mind when transistors were first used
晶体管的价格
in a computer they were 20 times more expensive
是电子管的20倍
than vacuum tubes.
尽管晶体管更贵
Even though transistors were much costlier,
但计算计研究者认为 从长远来看
computer scientists knew they had more of
晶体管更有优势 事实证明确实如此
an upside in the long run, and look where that led us! …
通勤路上
Watching cat videos
你可以放心观看手机里猫的视频 以避免视线接触
on your phone while you avoid eye contact on your commute to work.
感谢科技痴们做出的贡献
Thanks nerds!
想让这些0和1在电脑上努力运行
Make these 0 ’ s and 1 ’ s on your computer work hard
可以通过Domain.com建立自己的网站
by making your very own website with Domain.com.
特别感谢Domain.com对本集“探索者”的支持
Special thanks to Domain dot com for sponsoring this episode of Seeker!
Domain.com是可信赖、可负担、非常棒的一个网站
Domain dot com is awesome, affordable, reliable,
它上面有建立一个新的网站所需的
Domain dot com is awesome, affordable, reliable,
各种工具
new website.
在一个专业的网站与世界分享你的想法
Start sharing your ideas with the world on a professional website.
Domain.com可以满足你建设网站的所有需求
Domain.com can fulfill all your website needs.
它提供“.com” “.net”域名 以及直观的网页设计工具
They offer dot com and dot net domain names, and intuitive website builders.
它有超过300个的扩展域可以满足你的需求
They have over three hundred domain extensions to fit your needs,
从“.club” 到“.space”
from dot club to dot space,
再到“.family” 甚是“.pizza”
to dot family or pizza!
建立网站的第一步登录“domain.com”创建一个在线身份
Take that first step in creating an identity online and visit domain dot com.
更多关于计算机压缩变小的问题
For more about the problems with ever shrinking computers,
尽在视频最后的
watch this video on the end of
摩尔定律以及新型芯片设计的提出
Moore’s law and the whole new chip design they’re proposing.
有趣的是第一支点接触型晶体管发明于1947年
Fun Fact: The first point-contact transistor was invented in 1947,
它是由
and it was made from
一条条金箔、一块三角形塑料
strips of gold foil, a plastic triangle,
然后叠加在锗质结晶体上
and a germanium crystal that you push down.
奥 今天说得有点久了
Boy have we come a long way.
谢谢收看
Thanks for watching

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视频概述

电脑从房间大小到只占房间的一个小角落,硅芯片功不可没,硅芯片的出现,晶体管功不可没。晶体管的发展遇到量子力学的阻碍,硅芯片遭遇瓶颈,硅芯片的下个时代又将迎来什么?

听录译者

收集自网络

翻译译者

曾庆HONG

审核员

审核员 D

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NlO9F-gl9e4

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