A Logical Use for Atoms

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Science  27 May 2011:
Vol. 332, Issue 6033, pp. 1039-1040
DOI: 10.1126/science.1206086

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It is increasingly more difficult and costly to continue to shrink silicon chip components. Moore's law, which describes such progress, is running into serious trouble. Technologists have been seeking out alternative architectures for computation. Some have even pondered the possibility of shrinking the components to the ultimate end of any roadmap—to the scale of atoms. On page 1062 of this issue, Khajetoorians et al. present such a radical leap forward (1) by demonstrating spin-based logic operation in chains of magnetic atoms on a surface.