Matching Items (2)

Simulation models for programmable metallization cells

Description

Advances in software and applications continue to demand advances in memory. The ideal memory would be non-volatile and have maximal capacity, speed, retention time, endurance, and radiation hardness while also

Advances in software and applications continue to demand advances in memory. The ideal memory would be non-volatile and have maximal capacity, speed, retention time, endurance, and radiation hardness while also having minimal physical size, energy usage, and cost. The programmable metallization cell (PMC) is an emerging memory technology that is likely to surpass flash memory in all the listed ideal memory characteristics. A comprehensive physics-based model is needed to fully understand PMC operation and aid in design optimization. With the intent of advancing the PMC modeling effort, this thesis presents two simulation models for the PMC. The first model is a finite element model based on Silvaco Atlas finite element analysis software. Limitations of the software are identified that make this model inconsistent with the operating mechanism of the PMC. The second model is a physics-based numerical model developed for the PMC. This model is successful in matching data measured from a chalcogenide glass PMC designed and manufactured at ASU. Matched operating characteristics observable in the current and resistance vs. voltage data include the OFF/ON resistances and write/erase and electrodeposition voltage thresholds. Multilevel programming is also explained and demonstrated with the numerical model. The numerical model has already proven useful by revealing some information presented about the operation and characteristics of the PMC.

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Date Created
  • 2013

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Simulating radial dendrite growth

Description

The formation of dendrites in materials is usually seen as a failure-inducing defect in devices. Naturally, most research views dendrites as a problem needing a solution while focusing on process

The formation of dendrites in materials is usually seen as a failure-inducing defect in devices. Naturally, most research views dendrites as a problem needing a solution while focusing on process control techniques and post-mortem analysis of various stress patterns with the ultimate goal of total suppression of the structures. However, programmable metallization cell (PMC) technology embraces dendrite formation in chalcogenide glasses by utilizing the nascent conductive filaments as its core operative element. Furthermore, exciting More-than-Moore capabilities in the realms of device watermarking and hardware encryption schema are made possible by the random nature of dendritic branch growth. While dendritic structures have been observed and are well-documented in solid state materials, there is still no satisfactory theoretical model that can provide insight and a better understanding of how dendrites form. Ultimately, what is desired is the capability to predict the final structure of the conductive filament in a PMC device so that exciting new applications can be developed with PMC technology.

This thesis details the results of an effort to create a first-principles MATLAB simulation model that uses configurable physical parameters to generate images of dendritic structures. Generated images are compared against real-world samples. While growth has a significant random component, there are several reliable characteristics that form under similar parameter sets that can be monitored such as the relative length of major dendrite arms, common branching angles, and overall growth directionality.

The first simulation model that was constructed takes a Newtonian perspective of the problem and is implemented using the Euler numerical method. This model has several shortcomings stemming majorly from the simplistic treatment of the problem, but is highly performant. The model is then revised to use the Verlet numerical method, which increases the simulation accuracy, but still does not fully resolve the issues with the theoretical background. The final simulation model returns to the Euler method, but is a stochastic model based on Mott-Gurney’s ion hopping theory applied to solids. The results from this model are seen to match real samples the closest of all simulations.

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Date Created
  • 2016