Photo of Xu Zhang

Computer & electronics hardware

Xu Zhang

Developing a kind of two-dimensional semiconductor.

Year Honored

Carnegie Mellon University


Hails From

Moore’s Law, which has powered the drive toward ever-smaller, more powerful computers, has led to the likes of AI, cloud computing, and autonomous driving. But the law is reaching its limits because the billions of devices squeezed onto a silicon chip can only get so small before the laws of physics intervene. Xu Zhang, 34, has approached the problem by developing a kind of two-dimensional semiconductor that’s just atoms thick. “By transforming semiconductors from 3D to 2D, it is possible to truly push computing technologies to the ultimate atomic limit and enable a future of ubiquitous computing and ambient intelligence,” Zhang says.