Washington, June 13 (Agencies): Water-powered clocks? It may sound like a gimmick but it isn’t. Manu
Prakash, Assistant Professor (Bioengineering) from Stanford has managed to create an entire new class of computer along with his students.
Prakash said that they weren’t aiming at competing with electronic computers or word processors, their goal was to build a new class of computer that have the ability to manipulate and control physical matter.
The water-powered computer makes use of a rotating motherboard made from glass sides and iron bars. Every time it turns, its electromagnetic field flips which pulls the water droplets that are infused with magnetic nanoparticles. And as the clock keeps turning, the water droplets will march one step at a time. They will continue following the predetermined logic of the computer system while doing so.
One of Prakash’s grad student’s Georgios Katsikis said that they were able to demonstrate how they can make every universal log gate by following the same rules and changing the bar layout on the chip. He also said there was a lot of design space in this platform. He said that they could use the droplets to re-create any Boolean logic circuit.
Their computer system is so small and clock mechanism is so simple and error free that it is believed to be infinitely scalable.
Co-author and graduate student Jim Cybulski said that they could continue reducing its size to allow it to perform more operations at a time and work with smaller droplets and do more operations on a single chip.
These motherboards are now being made available for the public by the researchers and they hope that some other research teams can also find fresh applications for their clock & build new computers with it.
All their work was detailed in the latest edition of the Nature Physics journal.
2015 Kashmir Despatch