Goodbye Silicon! Your Next Computer Chip Could Be Made of Gallium Oxide

Traditionally, computer chips have been made out of silicon due to the fact it’s the most abundant semi-conductor on Earth. However we have reached the bounds on how small silicon can become. This has prompted the search for new ways to decrease the amount of space a computer chip takes up and according to a new study published earlier this year, the new alternative may have been discovered.

Gallium oxide is being looked at as the replacement for silicon due to its large bandgap. This property means that gallium oxide has an uniquely high ‘critical field strength’ and a broad range of possible conductivities. All of this makes gallium oxide a better future candidate for computer chip scalability. Although this field of study is new, it is believed that more gallium oxide transistors can fit onto a chip than silicon transistors and potentially improve the efficiency of future high-power electronics.