Researchers have helped to smooth the way for memory chips that are 10 to 100 times denser than today’s devices, by developing a way to cut down on friction at the nanoscale.
The method could have far-reaching implications for both micro- and nano-electromechanical systems (MEMS and NEMS), which are used for storage and other applications in communications and computing.
This figure shows the dramatic reduction in friction that occurs when an atomic force microscope tip is vibrated as it moves across a surface. Reducing friction could help create very dense memory devices. (Courtesy of Anisoara Socoliuc, University of Basel.)