Physical requirements for scaling up network-based biocomputation

Jingyuan Zhu, Till Korten, Hillel Kugler, Falco Van Delft, Alf M nsson, Danny Reuter, Stefan Diez, Heiner Linke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (SciVal)


The high energy consumption of electronic data processors, together with physical challenges limiting their further improvement, has triggered intensive interest in alternative computation paradigms. Here we focus on network-based biocomputation (NBC), a massively parallel approach where computational problems are encoded in planar networks implemented with nanoscale channels. These networks are explored by biological agents, such as biological molecular motor systems and bacteria, benefitting from their energy efficiency and availability in large numbers. We analyse and define the fundamental requirements that need to be fulfilled to scale up NBC computers to become a viable technology that can solve large NP-complete problem instances faster or with less energy consumption than electronic computers. Our work can serve as a guide for further efforts to contribute to elements of future NBC devices, and as the theoretical basis for a detailed NBC roadmap.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105004
JournalNew Journal of Physics
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Oct

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Energy Systems
  • Computer Engineering
  • Physical Sciences
  • Other Physics Topics


  • molecular motor
  • nanofabrication
  • network-based biocomputation
  • NP-complete problem
  • parallel computing


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