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Negative Electron Affinity Vacuum Microelectronics

Press Release

Press Release

Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI) has been awarded a research program from the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) to develop vacuum channel-based microelectronic analogues of the classic vacuum diodes and triodes, as well as novel single element logic gates.

PSI’s devices will possess an inherent physical and data-fault tolerance of extreme conditions such as ionizing radiation and temperature. The key advance embodied by these devices is the use of materials possessing stable, robust negative electron affinity (NEA) surfaces, enabling design of circuit elements with ultra-low operating voltage and power usage, resistance to self-induced electrical discharge damage, and high operating speed while retaining an exceptionally low cost to manufacture.

This research has numerous applications in high-speed electronics and electronics for use in extreme radiation environments such as nuclear reactors and spacecraft, as well as military applications. The devices and circuits developed under this research will likely possess novel characteristics rendering them useful for commercial applications in which logic and circuit elements requiring operation under extremely high-power loads are required.

For more information, contact:

Dr. Dorin Preda
Group Leader, Material Technologies
Physical Sciences Inc.
Telephone: (978) 689-0003