San Diego, CA — Researchers supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) have reported the discovery of organisms that form a protective armor of nearly perfect crystals from the atoms on the surface of a silicon or germanium semiconductor. This characteristic could be exploited to make faster, more stable biochips for use in the next generation of information technology, the researchers believe.
“Instead of putting cells ‘on’ a chip, this research indicates they can be put ‘in’ a chip, potentially reducing the steps needed to manufacture and operate bio-based electronic components,” said Robert Baier of the NSF Center for Biosurfaces at State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo.
Scientists and engineers at two other NSF research centers participated in the research: the Center for Microcontamination Control at the University of Arizona and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York and the Center for Environmentally Benign Semiconductor Manufacturing at the University of Arizona. The Queen’s University of Belfast, Northern Ireland, also supported the research.