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ULTRARAM: A Low-Energy, High-Endurance, Compound-Semiconductor Memory on Silicon

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Article number2101103
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>30/04/2022
<mark>Journal</mark>Advanced Electronic Materials
Issue number4
Number of pages9
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date5/01/22
<mark>Original language</mark>English


ULTRARAM is a nonvolatile memory with the potential to achieve fast, ultralow-energy electron storage in a floating gate accessed through a triple-barrier resonant tunneling heterostructure. Here its implementation is reported on a Si substrate; a vital step toward cost-effective mass production. Sample growth using molecular beam epitaxy commences with deposition of an AlSb nucleation layer to seed the growth of a GaSb buffer layer, followed by the III–V memory epilayers. Fabricated single-cell memories show clear 0/1 logic-state contrast after ≤10 ms duration program/erase pulses of ≈2.5 V, a remarkably fast switching speed for 10 and 20 µm devices. Furthermore, the combination of low voltage and small device capacitance per unit area results in a switching energy that is orders of magnitude lower than dynamic random access memory and flash, for a given cell size. Extended testing of devices reveals retention in excess of 1000 years and degradation-free endurance of over 107 program/erase cycles, surpassing very recent results for similar devices on GaAs substrates.