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Transistors Work at Low Temp

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Kevin Robinson

Engineers at Germanium Power Devices are refining a transistor that works at liquid helium temperature. The germanium field-effect transistor was pioneered by Texas Instruments but never put into extensive production. The Massachusetts company, funded by a Small Business Innovation Research grant, is optimizing the device for deep cryogenic operation. Current transistors do not operate well at extremely low temperatures, causing poor device performance.
The devices fill a need at NASA for transistors in cryogenically cooled infrared detectors, and the agency plans to use them in its missions. Other applications include x-ray astronomy and gravitational-wave detection.

Photonics Spectra
Jun 1998
GLOSSARY
astronomy
The scientific observation of celestial radiation that has reached the vicinity of Earth, and the interpretation of these observations to determine the characteristics of the extraterrestrial bodies and phenomena that have emitted the radiation.
astronomyBasic ScienceResearch & TechnologySensors & DetectorsTech Pulse

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