Establishing Electrically Programmable Reaction Arrays as Universal Chemical Computers

Lead Research Organisation: University of Glasgow
Department Name: School of Chemistry


This research proposes to create new type of hybrid electrically programmable chemical array (EPCA) chemical-silicon computing architecture that can tackle data intensive computations such as stochastic optimizations, (e.g. simulated annealing), and complex computational problems. The objective is to start a new roadmap for chemical computing targeting universal computation aiming at hard mathematical problems. The vision of this work is to generate a hybrid silicon-chemical-processor. This development of a programmable chemical computer will be achieved by building a hybrid silicon-chemical information processing architecture, where the computations occur chemically, and the inputs come from an array of electrodes, building on nascent work in the area of reservoir computing. The system will be programmed by an electrode array to drive electrochemical processes, and the outputs will be read by arrays of ion sensitive field effect transistors (ISFETs). This dual-electrode-sensor system will be used to both program and read out from a redox active chemical oscillator, embedded in an electroactive gel. The digital information processing will occur in the chemical medium, using the redox-configurable gel to encapsulate and navigate a vast programmable state space. This navigation will be guided by a chemical clock, that will also be used for error correction. The gel network will help stabilize the electrically programmed chemical array. The chemical parallel processing array will be benchmarked as both a digital computer and a machine learning system, liberated from the von Neumann bottleneck.


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