How are Embedded Systems Used in Nanotechnology

Embedded Systems nanotechnology

As you might already know, embedded systems are applied in an array of different fields. Evidently, nanotechnology is one of them. Although the new and exciting field is sometimes referred to as nanoelectronics, to be more specific, we will call it as embedded systems in nanotechnology. Both areas of technology are rapidly growing and their combination is sure to benefit our lives in the future. Some of the well-known applications of nanoelectronics include quantum computers, optoelectronics, energy production, medical facilities etc. Come, let us look at this field in more detail.

What are Embedded Systems in Nanotechnology

An embedded system is a combination of hardware and software, where software is used to instruct the hardware to perform certain tasks. When such a system is implemented on a minute scale in nanodevices, it is called as embedded systems in nanotechnology. Although the idea may sound revolutionary, due to the small form factor, it’s workload capacity is also limited. Hence, such systems need to be used in mass to have a tangible impact. However, their applications can be both cost and power effective too, and therefore they are being used in large numbers these days.

Applications Of Embedded Systems in Nanotechnology

Carbon Nanotube Transistors

Also, called carbon nanotube field-effect transistors, they are one of the main applications of embedded systems in nanotechnology. Traditional transistors use silicon as the channel, but here, a single or combination of carbon nanotubes are used in conjunction to perform tasks that normal transistors carry out. They were first demonstrated in 1998 and have since undergone major developments to be viable for operation.

Single Electron Transistor

One of the most sensitive electronic devices is the single-electron transistor. It is based on the Coulomb blockade effect and electron flows through a tunnel between the source and quantum dot. The voltage between the two can then be fine-tuned through a gate, which is always in conjunction with the quantum dot. The basic idea was first shown by David Thouless in 1977 and has then developed into various forms in recent decades.

Resonant Tunnelling Devices

This application of embedded systems in nanotechnology is garnering a lot of interest due to its ultra-fast speeds and low cost of operation and power required. Its main property is the negative differential resistance, shown through current-voltage characteristics. The first report of resonant tunneling in nanostructures came in 1974 and more advancements have been made in recent years. Although, mainstream electronics have not fully adopted this technology yet. Combinations with transistor architecture have yielded additional advantages too, so that might be an area where this is headed.


With advancements in technology, more and more fields are getting intertwined and embedded systems in nanotechnology are no exception. However, there is still a long way to go for these to be adopted fully in mainstream electronics. A lot of the circuit designs and programming is still in its infant stage.

Embedded Systems in Nanotechnology

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