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Encyclopedia > Molecular memory

Molecular memory is a type of experimental data storage technology which hopes to supplant DRAM memory as the lowest cost technology for high-speed computer memory. The terms storage (U.K.) or memory (U.S.) refer to the parts of a digital computer that retain physical state (data) for some interval of time, possibly even after electrical power to the computer is turned off. ... Dram can mean several things: for the imperial unit of volume see dram (volume) for the imperial unit of weight or mass see avoirdupois and apothecaries system of mass for the Armenian monetary unit see dram (currency) DRAM is a type of RAM and unlike dram is spelled in all... The terms storage (U.K.) or memory (U.S.) refer to the parts of a digital computer that retain physical state (data) for some interval of time, possibly even after electrical power to the computer is turned off. ...

Molecular memories are based on special compounds such as porphyrin-based polymers which are capable of storing electric charge. Once a certain voltage threshold is achieved the material oxidizes, releasing an electric charge. The process is reversible, in effect creating an electric capacitor. The properties of the material allow for a much greater capacitance per unit area than with conventional DRAM memory, thus potentially leading to smaller and cheaper integrated circuits. A porphyrin is a heterocyclic macrocycle made from 4 pyrrole subunits linked on opposite sides through 4 methine bridges. ... A polymer is a generic term used to describe a substantially long molecule. ... Electric charge is a fundamental conserved property of some subatomic particles, which determines their electromagnetic interactions. ... The most fundamental reactions in chemistry are the redox processes. ... capacitor Various types of capacitors A capacitor (occasionally referred to using the older term condenser) is a device that stores energy in the electric field created between a pair of conductors on which equal but opposite electric charges have been placed. ... An integrated circuit (IC) is a thin chip consisting of at least two interconnected semiconductor devices, mainly transistors, as well as passive components like resistors. ...

At present, molecular memories are still found only in laboratories.

Several universities and a number of companies (Hewlett Packard, ZettaCore) have announced work on molecular memories. NASA is also supporting research on non-volatile molecular memories [1] The Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE: HPQ), commonly known as HP, is a very large global company headquartered in Palo Alto, California, United States. ... The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), which was established in 1958, is the agency responsible for the public space program of the United States of America. ... Non-volatile memory is a form of computer storage which can retain its state even when not powered. ...

  Results from FactBites:
HP maps molecular memory TRN 071801 (976 words)
To connect the memory unit to the outside world, the researchers plan to randomly sprinkle nanometer-size gold particles on the sections of the nanowires that extend past the grid and then lay down a set of larger wires on the gold particles at right angles to the nanowires.
Putting a molecular switch on each nanoparticle and then forming connections between the nanowires and larger wires without crushing the molecular switches is a major but not insurmountable challenge, Jackson said.
The molecular memory addressing system could be used in practical devices in five to ten years, according to Kuekes.
AC 6/97: MOLECULAR IMPRINTING... (2392 words)
Molecular recognition between a molecular receptor (host) and a substrate (guest) in a matrix containing structurally related molecules requires discrimination and binding; this can happen only if the binding sites of the host and guest molecules complement each other in size, shape, and chemical functionality.
Molecular imprinting of substances that resemble reaction transition states has led to polymers exhibiting some esterolytic activity (24); other examples of catalytic reactions include the ß-elimination of HF from 4-fluoro-4-(p-nitrophenyl)-2-butanone (25, 26) and aldol condensation (27).
The morphine-specific molecular recognition properties were not significantly altered by the manufacturing procedure, which involved rather harsh treatment; and the composite particles were shown to be electrically conductive when examined as dry layers on an interdigitated finger array device.
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