London: A team of researchers lead by Indian origin scientist has unveiled the first computer built entirely with carbon nanotubes.
`Cedric`, which is the most complex carbon-based electronic system realised till now, is only a basic prototype, but could open the door to a new generation of digital devices, the BBC reported.
It can help develop a machine which is smaller, faster and more efficient than today`s silicon models.
Co-author Max Shulaker said that in human terms, Cedric can count on his hands and sort the alphabet. But he is, in the full sense of the word, a computer that operates on just one bit of information, and can only count to 32.
The engineer said that there is no limit to the tasks it can perform, given enough memory.
Cedric runs a basic operating system which allows it to swap back and forth between two tasks and unlike previous carbon-based computers, it gets the answer right every time.
Meanwhile, Prof Subhasish Mitra, lead author on the study, and his team hopes that their achievement will galvanise efforts to find a commercial successor to silicon chips, which could soon encounter their physical limits.
The breakthrough by Stanford University engineers is published in Nature.