Scientists from Stanford have created a thermal screen for electronic devices with a thickness of 10 atoms

The new invention will protect users and heat-sensitive components in laptops and phones.

Such a solution can make electronics more compact than ever.

The excess heat that laptops give offPhones and other electronics not only cause inconvenience, but can also lead to malfunctions or even explosion of a lithium battery. Engineers resort to using plastic, glass, or even air to protect components like microprocessors from overheating.

Recently, researchers from StanfordUniversity students have shown that a pair of layers of ultra-thin material mounted above a heat source provide insulation comparable to a sheet of 100 thicker glass. This technology will allow engineers to create extremely compact devices.

“We look at heat in electronics from a completely different perspective,” says Eric Pop, professor of electrical engineering.

Stanford says heat is soundcreated by electrons in a collision with atoms of a conductor. However, we cannot hear this sound because our ear is unable to pick up such frequencies. But a similar sound can be felt - and it is so familiar to us warmly.

Thoughts on heat as a form of sound ledresearchers to the principles of the physical world. During his time as a DJ on the radio, Eric noticed that the soundproofing of the studio is provided by thick window panes. However, this approach in electronics (used now, by the way) will negate the efforts of engineers to make gadgets thinner. The guys from Stanford took a different path and took the idea from the builders: plastic windows are layers of air between layers of glass of different thicknesses, which makes houses warmer and provides sound insulation.

Atomically thin materials - relatively newinvention. Scientists were able to separate some substances into such thin layers only 15 years ago. The Stanford team created a 10-atom thermal insulator made of graphene (thin-fine carbon) and three other similar materials. Despite their thickness, such insulators very efficiently absorb the heat energy passing through them.


Multiple enlarged image of the thermal screen

Little is left: scientists need to find a way to mass-produce such materials and integrate them into electronic components at the production stage.
Moreover, the team set a goal to learnto control vibration in solids in the same way that we control light or electricity right now. They even talk about creating a new science - phononics. The word is of Greek origin and is a mixture of the words phone, phonograph and phonetics.

With proper development, this technology mayincredibly strong impact on our entire world, and not just on electronics. Good thermal insulation comes in handy in engines, and in the extraction of mineral resources, and even in heavy engineering.

A source: Stanford News

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