According to BBC News, the results will help designers cope with the physical constraints that occur when working at such tiny scales.

Simulating hundreds of thousands of tiny transistors has used about 20 years worth of processing time.

The researchers hope to get a sense of how such tiny components vary to work out the best way to produce future generations of chips with even smaller components.

‘What we do in these simulations is try to predict the behaviour of these devices in the presence of atomic scale effects,’ said Professor Asen Asenov, head of the device modelling group at the University of Glasgow, which is leading the NanoCMOS simulation project.

The increasing power of silicon chips is largely dictated by the size of the components that chip makers can cram on to each chunk of silicon.

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