Since the demonstration of the first transistors in 1947, computing electronics has been based mostly on one material, silicon. The emergence of MOSFETs in the 1960s and the development of microlithography and other fabrication techniques have allowed the continuous miniaturization of silicon devices. The resulting increases in density and switching speed and the reduced cost have made today’s information age possible. Unfortunately, for various technological and even fundamental physical reasons, that scaling process is reaching its useful limits. In response, researchers are exploring ideas for logic devices based on either different operating principles or different materials whose properties can sustain the scaling to yet smaller size and greater performance.

Among the alternative technologies, carbon-based electronics is particularly significant. It is based on the 1991 discovery of carbon nanotubes 1 and the more recent studies of individual graphite layers, so-called graphenes. 2 A single-walled CNT can be thought of as a...

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