DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency for the U.S. military, has done it again. they haven't created a freakishly fast robot in a while, but it's because they've been focusing on a freakishly fast computer chip.
The new record holder for the fastest computer chip is 1THz (terahertz) or 1,000GHz (gigahertz). The previous record-holder was a mere 850GHz, but this 250GHz increase is a pretty big deal.
Surprisingly, DARPA is not looking to speed up computers just yet with this incredible new chip. For one thing, breakthroughs in cooling technology would have to happen to keep up with these speeds.
Think your laptop gets pretty hot now? The heat and energy output would be nothing compared to the heat wave from this new chip.
It doesn't look like much, but this little chip design has the ability to switch on and off one trillion times a second.
One trillion times. A second.
To put this giant number in perspective, it takes your eyes 400 milliseconds to blink. That means that this chip works so fast that it could make 2,500 eye blinks in the same amount of time it takes you to blink once. Crazy, huh?
The image below is the diagram for the new 1THz chip. Unfortunately, the specs on the chip aren't available yet.
DARPA is looking into using this technology in radio waves, specifically to create "sub-millimeter-wave terahertz range." But what does this even mean?
"These waves (sometimes called T-rays), as far as the military are concerned, are a prime way of supercharging everything from radar, to imaging and reconnaissance, to ultra-high-bandwidth wireless networks. Basically, because the wavelength of T-rays are so short (less than a millimeter), they can provide much higher resolution than, say, conventional radar, which uses frequencies of a much longer wavelength (anywhere from 100 meters to a few centimeters). The density of T-rays makes them very good for carrying large amounts of data, too — and, as an added bonus, they’re very good at safely penetrating a few millimeters of skin (yes, airports are interested in terahertz security scanners)."