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Graphene-based Nanoantennas Could Allow WLANs of Nanodevices

timothy posted about 4 months ago | from the psst-pass-it-on dept.

Networking 45

Freshly Exhumed writes "With the onslaught of graphene experimentation, especially in computing and RF, news from IEEE Spectrum comes that researchers at Georgia Tech have computer-modeled nanoantennas made from graphene that could provide wireless network communications between nanoscopic devices. "We are exploiting the peculiar propagation of electrons in graphene to make a very small antenna that can radiate at much lower frequencies than classical metallic antennas of the same size," said Ian Akyildiz, a professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, in a press release. "We believe that this is just the beginning of a new networking and communications paradigm based on the use of graphene.""

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45 comments

Embedded clothing network? (1)

allaunjsilverfox2 (882195) | about 4 months ago | (#45698433)

A use I could think of is having these embedded into thread, and then stitched into regular clothing. I'd imagine our bodies generate enough residual energy to power it and they would act as a cumulative network that could broadcast your vitals to a external device.

Re:Embedded clothing network? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698471)

Have you applied to work at the NSA yet?

Re: Embedded clothing network? (1)

Philip Mather (2889417) | about 4 months ago | (#45698675)

Says an "Anonymous Coward"?! We all know AC's account has been hijacked by bored NSA sysadmins. ;-)

Re: Embedded clothing network? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698955)

No, you're thinking of the "cold fjord" account.

NSA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45701675)

> No, you're thinking of the "cold fjord" account.

Both of them, both of them. And I'm a leaker.

Re:Embedded clothing network? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698683)

I seem to recall something on a TV show or movie where they where working on a neck tie that could be remotely triggered to strangle some one... This would work well with that.

Re:Embedded clothing network? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45699361)

Why, are you hiring again?

Re:Embedded clothing network? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698723)

Or you could order bikinis to suddenly dissolve.

Re:Embedded clothing network? (3, Interesting)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 4 months ago | (#45701595)

Vitals are so last millenium. Why not just build a new neural scaffold out of them, connect it to your brain, then by the time your organic parts are dead the non-organic systems will have expanded to contain redundant coppies of the old wetware architecture.

When you watched Star Trek I bet you wanted to be the Captain, or Bones, or Spock, etc. It never occurred to you that it would be far more enjoyable to be the ship.

Re:Embedded clothing network? (1)

Rande (255599) | about 4 months ago | (#45701853)

Not in the Star Trek universe, no. The computer is never allowed to make suggestions even though it almost always knows the answer if the crew just asks.
And the Self-Destruct....just no.
I think I'd rather go for being a Replicator in the Stargate universe....just a little smarter and realizing that as a machine I could just go colonize some planets that the carbon based lifeforms don't care about.

Re:Embedded clothing network? (1)

Meyaht (2729603) | about 4 months ago | (#45704081)

When you watched Star Trek I bet you wanted to be the Captain, or Bones, or Spock, etc. It never occurred to you that it would be far more enjoyable to be the ship.

I couldn't imagine having that many people in me at once...

Re:Embedded clothing network? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45711341)

Just remember all technologies and sciences are Chinese and Chinese invention but it takes them a while to arrive there, and are of course a temporary deviation by a few not simple wackos, because the mass...

OOH NANO THIS NANO THAT! (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698469)

Kind of like CYBER security CYBER warfare CYBER terrorism. I am sick and tired of hearing your vulgar, cheap jargon. Nano is 10^-9. Nanoscale means just that.
 
- Ethanol-fueled

VORSICHT! ACHTUNG! MODERATORS! CUARTO DE BANO! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698521)

Mod parent up! This shall be seen. If you do not mod parent up, you are a total d-o-u-c-h-e-b-a-g and a paedophile!

Re:OOH NANO THIS NANO THAT! (2)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 4 months ago | (#45698999)

Nano is 10^-9. Nanoscale means just that.

Actually everything below 10^-6 is called "nano" (because e.g. 10^-7 is 100 nano — and, of course, because that way you can label your stuff "nano" much earlier ;-)).

Mod parent down! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45699085)

This fool has never studied SI prefixes which the GP is obviously referring to.
 
captcha: incompetent

Re:Mod parent down! (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 4 months ago | (#45699255)

This fool has never studied SI prefixes which the GP is obviously referring to.

I know SI prefixes very well.

10^-3 = milli
10^-6 = micro
10^-9 = nano.

10^-7 = 10^(2-9) = 10^2 * 10^-9 = 100 nano

Advice to AC: Learn your power laws.

MODERATORS! WARNING! Mod Parent DOWN! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45700233)

Parent *still* does not know what she is talking about.

Not faster processors, not [many] more cores (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698497)

but more devices, many many more, and all of these smaller: that is the direction that electronics / computing seems to take. This becomes more interesting each day. By what "cloud" ( not in the currenlty accepted sense ) of computing / sensing / emitting / networked devices will we be surrounded in, say, 2030 ?

Bits or it didn't happen (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 4 months ago | (#45698535)

"We are exploiting the peculiar propagation of electrons in graphene to make a very small antenna that can radiate at much lower frequencies than classical metallic antennas of the same size," said Ian Akyildiz, a professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, in a funding drive.

FTFY.

Re:Bits or it didn't happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45701383)

"We are exploiting the peculiar propagation of electrons in graphene to make a very small antenna that can radiate at much lower frequencies than classical metallic antennas of the same size," said Ian Akyildiz, a professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, in a funding drive.

FTFY.

Wrong, the study was already fully funded.

As for all the press articles and the summary, here's an actual quote from the researchers: "Each one of these components would have a nanoscale measurement, but in total we would have a machine measuring a few micrometers"

So NO, we won't have any networks of Nano devices. Networks of Micro devices... possibly.

Stuck In Beta (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698653)

I connected to Slashdot and I am again stuck in the beta version beta.slashdot.org from which I cannot break free.

It is unattractive, not that "classic" Slashdot is anything pretty.
It wastes a LOT of screen real estate with unnecessary formatting flairs.
The low contrast color scheme is VERY hard to read.

Lemme explain something to the Slashcrew and Dice.com; if you roll out this UTTER-SHIT-BETA you will go out of business. See Digg.

Ignore me at your peril. This Beta CMS blog crap sucks the lama's ass!

Captcha reads: blunders Even the captcha knows!

Massively distributed kettle-based spies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45698819)

When spam bots can be built into kettles [antipope.org] , do we really want even smaller networking kit?

Re:Massively distributed kettle-based spies (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 4 months ago | (#45699281)

Well, if pot and kettle get WiFi enabled, then finally the pot can really call the kettle black. ;-)

Re:Massively distributed kettle-based spies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45700213)

Racist!

Error in the article graphic (1)

theraptor05 (908452) | about 4 months ago | (#45698865)

The graphic at the top of the article indicates 10-100 nm. This is out in the UV, and would make a quite horrible wireless system. The article mentions terahertz, which would be 10-100 um. Still only useable over short distances, but much more likely.

Graphic looks right (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45699753)

The 10-100 nm dimension is transverse to the surface plasmon; the length of antenna is shown as 1 m. In the same way as the width of the wire you build your radio aerial isn't really relevant to reception but the length is, the 10-100 nm dimension isn't particularly relevant to this little device's behaviour.

There's still a problem of length scales here in that the 0.1-10 THz claimed has much longer wavelengths than this 1 m device -- I don't know what the refractive index (or more strictly, the dielectric) of graphene is but I'd be surprised if it were in the 100-1000 range that is required to do this with traditional plasmonics. But that's the entire point of the article... their models have predicted something that is not expected from the classical electrodynamics that /. readers (think they) remember from 1st year physics and so want to apply to everything that ever goes past. Now if only the university's press office had waited for the research to be published rather than sending out the press release with the vague "the research is scheduled to be reported in the journal IEEE JSAC" we'd actually be able to look at it and learn. I assume I'll see it in a Table of Contents alert in a month or two and actually read it then. Yay. (It's also a very odd choice of journal to publish this sort of work so we may yet find that the journal article has little to do with the press release at all.)

Re:Graphic looks right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45700159)

(And I see that /. eats the nice little 'micro' symbol and leaving 1 m long devices.... really can't do UTF-8 yet at the end of 2013?)

Re:Error in the article graphic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45704489)

We are exploiting the peculiar propagation of electrons in graphene to make a very small antenna that can radiate at much lower frequencies than classical metallic antennas of the same size

Graphene antennas don't seem to work the same as normal antenna. These new antenna can seemingly be magnitudes smaller than the wavelength they are creating.

Ultimate Spying Network (1)

should_be_linear (779431) | about 4 months ago | (#45699291)

Billions of nanobots spread in the air, capable of audio/video streaming... now that would be "1984" on steroids. Think of NSA being able to look anywhere at any time, live.

Re:Ultimate Spying Network (2)

H0p313ss (811249) | about 4 months ago | (#45701151)

It's called "smart dust", and the idea is anything but new [regehr.org] .

Re:Ultimate Spying Network (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45709789)

Anything but new is right. Bob Shaw used his "slow glass" to this effect in his 1967 story "Burden of Proof". (Wasn't real time, but by spreading slow-glass dust of varying durations around, they could later pick the timeframe they wanted to observe.)

(Slow glass was his fictional device where an image takes anywhere from seconds to years to cross the piece of "glass", depending on the glass.)

Bad Idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45701021)

Just like BYOD is a bad idea, this is a stupendously bad idea.

a bit late for modeling (1)

Goldsmith (561202) | about 4 months ago | (#45703561)

I've seen many types of graphene antennas built and tested over the last several years.

The resistivity of very high quality graphene is about 1000 ohms per square. Any advantage you may get from graphene is offset by huge impedance losses. You're looking at 10 to 100 kOhm resistance for the antennas described in the article. That's simply not going to work in a realistic system, particularly one based around an electrically small antenna.

Re:a bit late for modeling (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45705199)

I thought resistance was measured over distance. So even if graphene has 100x the hesitance, if it's 1000x smaller, it is still less wasteful. real question, I could be wrong.

Sounds like purest balderdash (1)

Ancient_Hacker (751168) | about 4 months ago | (#45704729)

The physics of antennas is pretty darn basic electrodynamics. You need a quarter to half a wavelength to make an efficient antenna. Scientists and engineers have tried for well over a century to overcome that limitation, with not much success. It's pretty basic-- if you want to set up an EM field, you need to be able to have charges separated by a goodly amount relative to the wavelength. The emitting material is irrelevant, in fact you need a really good conductor as you make the antenna shorter, as it's radiation resistance goes way down with length. Gaphene not only does not seem to have any advantage, it's high resistance is a big disadvantage. Sounds super highly fishy.

Re:Sounds like purest balderdash (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | about 4 months ago | (#45705661)

Gaphene not only does not seem to have any advantage, it's high resistance is a big disadvantage. Sounds super highly fishy.

Err, what?! Graphene is an extremely good conductor, not a bad one.

Re:Sounds like purest balderdash (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45709831)

The physics of antennas is pretty darn basic electrodynamics.

Only if you stop at the basics. Look up "fractal antennas" for example.

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