A team of theoretical physicists from the US Department of Energy’s
(DOE) SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University is
predicting that stanene, a single layer of tin atoms laid out in a
two-dimensional structure, could conduct electricity with one hundred
percent efficiency at room temperature. If the findings are confirmed
they could pave the way for building computer chips that are faster,
consume less power, and won't heat up nearly as much.
Stanene is an example of a topological insulator,
a class of materials that conduct electricity only on their outside
edges or surfaces. When topological insulators are just one atom thick,
their edges conduct electricity with 100 percent efficiency, forcing
electrons to move in defined lanes, without resistance.
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