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Thomas N. Theis, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center


After receiving his Ph.D. degree in physics from Brown University in 1978, Thomas Theis completed a post-doctoral year at the Technical University of Munich before joining the Semiconductor Science and Technology Department at IBM Watson Research Center in 1979. In 1982 he became manager of a group studying growth and properties of III-V semiconductors, and published extensively on III-V materials and devices. Since 1984 he has held various senior management and executive positions at IBM. In 1993 he was named Senior Manager, Silicon Science and Technology, where he coordinated the transfer of copper interconnection technology from IBM Research to the IBM Microelectronics Division – an industry first that involved close collaboration between research, product development, and manufacturing organizations. He was named Director, Physical Sciences in 1998. While in this position he championed successful new research initiatives in nanoelectronics, nanophotonics, exploratory memory devices, quantum computing, and “green” technology across IBM’s worldwide laboratories. In June of 2010, he assumed his present position as Program Manager, New Devices and Architectures for Computing. Dr. Theis is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and serves on numerous advisory boards and committees. He recently served on the committee that authored the Report to the President and Congress on the Third Assessment of the National Nanotechnology Initiative. He has authored or co-authored over 65 scientific and technical publications and additional publications on research investment and science and technology policy.


Two Grand Research Challenges in Nanoelectronics

Can we discover and develop the "Next Switch" -- a device for digital logic that can take information technology beyond the physical limits of the conventional field effect transistor? Can we discover and develop patterning processes for high-volume manufacturing at minimum critical dimensions of 10 nm and below? Recent research achievements suggest that these challenges can be met, but only with increased research focus and investment.