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Freescale's new MOSFET
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Written by Aidan   
Monday, 30 January 2006 08:23

Freescale semiconductor have been hard at work in creating a different type of MOSFET based around GaAs (Gallium Arsenide). GaAs semiconductors have certain advantages, but are notoriously difficult to build sucessfully. As most people are not familiar with GaAs, it offers better conductivity, higher speed switching, less noise and smaller die sizes. All of which are desirable in a MOSFET!

The biggest problem with GaAs has been creating the Metal Oxide gate (Hence the term MOS), to control the current flow in the device. Traditionally, silicon dioxide has been used to build the insulated gate. However, silicon dioxide and GaAS do not mix very well - trying to do so usually results in very poor yields, which has stopped the semiconductor industry from using GaAs for MOSFET devices.

Freescale appears to have found a way around the problem by using an alternative to silicon dioxide. They claim that their alternative is on par with silicon dioxide, which should result in better MOSFET style devices. Whilst they are suggesting that the new GaAs MOSFETs will be used in analog to digital converters, further generations could well find their way into other devices.

The new design could result in I/O drivers with higher current drive and faster switching speeds in chipsets, RAM and CPUs. This could well increase bus speeds and overclockablity, but will probably take a few years for manufacturers to get to grips with the technology.

 

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