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Integrated inductors with micro-patterned magnetic thin films for RF and power applications

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With increasing demand for System on Chip (SoC) and System in Package (SiP) design in computer and communication technologies, integrated inductor which is an essential passive component has been widely used in numerous integrated circuits (ICs) such as in voltage

With increasing demand for System on Chip (SoC) and System in Package (SiP) design in computer and communication technologies, integrated inductor which is an essential passive component has been widely used in numerous integrated circuits (ICs) such as in voltage regulators and RF circuits. In this work, soft ferromagnetic core material, amorphous Co-Zr-Ta-B, was incorporated into on-chip and in-package inductors in order to scale down inductors and improve inductors performance in both inductance density and quality factor. With two layers of 500 nm Co-Zr-Ta-B films a 3.5X increase in inductance and a 3.9X increase in quality factor over inductors without magnetic films were measured at frequencies as high as 1 GHz. By laminating technology, up to 9.1X increase in inductance and more than 5X increase in quality factor (Q) were obtained from stripline inductors incorporated with 50 nm by 10 laminated films with a peak Q at 300 MHz. It was also demonstrated that this peak Q can be pushed towards high frequency as far as 1GHz by a combination of patterning magnetic films into fine bars and laminations. The role of magnetic vias in magnetic flux and eddy current control was investigated by both simulation and experiment using different patterning techniques and by altering the magnetic via width. Finger-shaped magnetic vias were designed and integrated into on-chip RF inductors improving the frequency of peak quality factor from 400 MHz to 800 MHz without sacrificing inductance enhancement. Eddy current and magnetic flux density in different areas of magnetic vias were analyzed by HFSS 3D EM simulation. With optimized magnetic vias, high frequency response of up to 2 GHz was achieved. Furthermore, the effect of applied magnetic field on on-chip inductors was investigated for high power applications. It was observed that as applied magnetic field along the hard axis (HA) increases, inductance maintains similar value initially at low fields, but decreases at larger fields until the magnetic films become saturated. The high frequency quality factor showed an opposite trend which is correlated to the reduction of ferromagnetic resonant absorption in the magnetic film. In addition, experiments showed that this field-dependent inductance change varied with different patterned magnetic film structures, including bars/slots and fingers structures. Magnetic properties of Co-Zr-Ta-B films on standard organic package substrates including ABF and polyimide were also characterized. Effects of substrate roughness and stress were analyzed and simulated which provide strategies for integrating Co-Zr-Ta-B into package inductors and improving inductors performance. Stripline and spiral inductors with Co-Zr-Ta-B films were fabricated on both ABF and polyimide substrates. Maximum 90% inductance increase in hundreds MHz frequency range were achieved in stripline inductors which are suitable for power delivery applications. Spiral inductors with Co-Zr-Ta-B films showed 18% inductance increase with quality factor of 4 at frequency up to 3 GHz.

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Date Created
2013

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Codoped zinc oxide by a novel co-spray deposition technique for solar cells applications

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Zinc oxide (ZnO), a naturally n-type semiconductor has been identified as a promising candidate to replace indium tin oxide (ITO) as the transparent electrode in solar cells, because of its wide bandgap (3.37 eV), abundant source materials and suitable refractive

Zinc oxide (ZnO), a naturally n-type semiconductor has been identified as a promising candidate to replace indium tin oxide (ITO) as the transparent electrode in solar cells, because of its wide bandgap (3.37 eV), abundant source materials and suitable refractive index (2.0 at 600 nm). Spray deposition is a convenient and low cost technique for large area and uniform deposition of semiconductor thin films. In particular, it provides an easier way to dope the film by simply adding the dopant precursor into the starting solution. In order to reduce the resistivity of undoped ZnO, many works have been done by doping in the ZnO with either group IIIA elements or VIIA elements using spray pyrolysis. However, the resistivity is still too high to meet TCO's resistivity requirement. In the present work, a novel co-spray deposition technique is developed to bypass a fundamental limitation in the conventional spray deposition technique, i.e. the deposition of metal oxides from incompatible precursors in the starting solution. With this technique, ZnO films codoped with one cationic dopant, Al, Cr, or Fe, and an anionic dopant, F, have been successfully synthesized, in which F is incompatible with all these three cationic dopants. Two starting solutions were prepared and co-sprayed through two separate spray heads. One solution contained only the F precursor, NH 4F. The second solution contained the Zn and one cationic dopant precursors, Zn(O 2CCH 3) 2 and AlCl 3, CrCl 3, or FeCl 3. The deposition was carried out at 500 &degC; on soda-lime glass in air. Compared to singly-doped ZnO thin films, codoped ZnO samples showed better electrical properties. Besides, a minimum sheet resistance, 55.4 Ω/sq, was obtained for Al and F codoped ZnO films after vacuum annealing at 400 &degC;, which was lower than singly-doped ZnO with either Al or F. The transmittance for the Al and F codoped ZnO samples was above 90% in the visible range. This co-spray deposition technique provides a simple and cost-effective way to synthesize metal oxides from incompatible precursors with improved properties.

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Date Created
2013

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Growth and characterization of multisegment chalcogenide alloy nanostructures for photonic applications in a wide spectral range

Description

In this dissertation, I described my research on the growth and characterization of various nanostructures, such as nanowires, nanobelts and nanosheets, of different semiconductors in a Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) system.

In the first part of my research, I selected

In this dissertation, I described my research on the growth and characterization of various nanostructures, such as nanowires, nanobelts and nanosheets, of different semiconductors in a Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) system.

In the first part of my research, I selected chalcogenides (such as CdS and CdSe) for a comprehensive study in growing two-segment axial nanowires and radial nanobelts/sheets using the ternary CdSxSe1-x alloys. I demonstrated simultaneous red (from CdSe-rich) and green (from CdS-rich) light emission from a single monolithic heterostructure with a maximum wavelength separation of 160 nm. I also demonstrated the first simultaneous two-color lasing from a single nanosheet heterostructure with a wavelength separation of 91 nm under sufficiently strong pumping power.

In the second part, I considered several combinations of source materials with different growth methods in order to extend the spectral coverage of previously demonstrated structures towards shorter wavelengths to achieve full-color emissions. I achieved this with the growth of multisegment heterostructure nanosheets (MSHNs), using ZnS and CdSe chalcogenides, via our novel growth method. By utilizing this method, I demonstrated the first growth of ZnCdSSe MSHNs with an overall lattice mismatch of 6.6%, emitting red, green and blue light simultaneously, in a single furnace run using a simple CVD system. The key to this growth method is the dual ion exchange process which converts nanosheets rich in CdSe to nanosheets rich in ZnS, demonstrated for the first time in this work. Tri-chromatic white light emission with different correlated color temperature values was achieved under different growth conditions. We demonstrated multicolor (191 nm total wavelength separation) laser from a single monolithic semiconductor nanostructure for the first time. Due to the difficulties associated with growing semiconductor materials of differing composition on a given substrate using traditional planar epitaxial technology, our nanostructures and growth method are very promising for various device applications, including but not limited to: illumination, multicolor displays, photodetectors, spectrometers and monolithic multicolor lasers.

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Date Created
2015

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Optical characterization and lasing study of nanowires

Description

Nanowires are one-dimensional (1D) structures with diameter on the nanometer scales with a high length-to-diameter aspect ratio. Nanowires of various materials including semiconductors, dielectrics and metals have been intensively researched in the past two decades for applications to electrical and

Nanowires are one-dimensional (1D) structures with diameter on the nanometer scales with a high length-to-diameter aspect ratio. Nanowires of various materials including semiconductors, dielectrics and metals have been intensively researched in the past two decades for applications to electrical and optical devices. Typically, nanowires are synthesized using the vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) approach, which allows defect-free 1D growth despite the lattice mismatch between nanowires and substrates. Lattice mismatch issue is a serious problem in high-quality thin film growth of many semiconductors and non-semiconductors. Therefore, nanowires provide promising platforms for the applications requiring high crystal quality materials.

With the 1D geometry, nanowires are natural optical waveguides for light guiding and propagation. By introducing feedback mechanisms to nanowire waveguides, such as the cleaved end facets, the nanowires can work as ultra-small size lasers. Since the first demonstration of the room-temperature ultraviolet nanowire lasers in 2001, the nanowire lasers covering from ultraviolet to mid infrared wavelength ranges have been intensively studied. This dissertation focuses on the optical characterization and laser fabrication of two nanowire materials: erbium chloride silicate nanowires and composition-graded CdSSe semiconductor alloy nanowires.

Chapter 1 – 5 of this dissertation presents a comprehensive characterization of a newly developed erbium compound material, erbium chloride silicate (ECS) in a nanowire form. Extensive experiments demonstrated the high crystal quality and excellent optical properties of ECS nanowires. Optical gain higher than 30 dB/cm at 1.53 μm wavelength is demonstrated on single ECS nanowires, which is higher than the gain of any reported erbium materials. An ultra-high Q photonic crystal micro-cavity is designed on a single ECS nanowire towards the ultra-compact lasers at communication wavelengths. Such ECS nanowire lasers show the potential applications of on-chip photonics integration.

Chapter 6 – 7 presents the design and demonstration of dynamical color-controllable lasers on a single CdSSe alloy nanowire. Through the defect-free VLS growth, engineering of the alloy composition in a single nanowire is achieved. The alloy composition of CdSxSe1-x uniformly varies along the nanowire axis from x=1 to x=0, giving the opportunity of multi-color lasing in a monolithic structure. By looping the wide-bandgap end of the alloy nanowire through nanoscale manipulation, the simultaneous two-color lasing at green and red colors are demonstrated. The 107 nm wavelength separation of the two lasing colors is much larger than the gain bandwidth of typical semiconductors. Since the two-color lasing shares the output port, the color of the total lasing output can be controlled dynamically between the two fundamental colors by changing the relative output power of two lasing colors. Such multi-color lasing and continuous color tuning in a wide spectral range would eventually enable color-by-design lasers to be used for lighting, display and many other applications.

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Date Created
2015

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Characterization of interface state in silicon carbide metal oxide semiconductor capacitors

Description

Silicon carbide (SiC) has always been considered as an excellent material for high temperature and high power devices. Since SiC is the only compound semiconductor whose native oxide is silicon dioxide (SiO2), it puts SiC in a unique position. Although

Silicon carbide (SiC) has always been considered as an excellent material for high temperature and high power devices. Since SiC is the only compound semiconductor whose native oxide is silicon dioxide (SiO2), it puts SiC in a unique position. Although SiC metal oxide semiconductor (MOS) technology has made significant progress in recent years, there are still a number of issues to be overcome before more commercial SiC devices can enter the market. The prevailing issues surrounding SiC MOSFET devices are the low channel mobility, the low quality of the oxide layer and the high interface state density at the SiC/SiO2 interface. Consequently, there is a need for research to be performed in order to have a better understanding of the factors causing the poor SiC/SiO2 interface properties. In this work, we investigated the generation lifetime in SiC materials by using the pulsed metal oxide semiconductor (MOS) capacitor method and measured the interface state density distribution at the SiC/SiO2 interface by using the conductance measurement and the high-low frequency capacitance technique. These measurement techniques have been performed on n-type and p-type SiC MOS capacitors. In the course of our investigation, we observed fast interface states at semiconductor-dielectric interfaces in SiC MOS capacitors that underwent three different interface passivation processes, such states were detected in the nitrided samples but not observed in PSG-passivated samples. This result indicate that the lack of fast states at PSG-passivated interface is one of the main reasons for higher channel mobility in PSG MOSFETs. In addition, the effect of mobile ions in the oxide on the response time of interface states has been investigated. In the last chapter we propose additional methods of investigation that can help elucidate the origin of the particular interface states, enabling a more complete understanding of the SiC/SiO2 material system.

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Date Created
2015

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Fast numerical algorithms for 3-D scattering from PEC and dielectric random rough surfaces in microwave remote sensing

Description

We present fast and robust numerical algorithms for 3-D scattering from perfectly electrical conducting (PEC) and dielectric random rough surfaces in microwave remote sensing. The Coifman wavelets or Coiflets are employed to implement Galerkin’s procedure in the method of moments

We present fast and robust numerical algorithms for 3-D scattering from perfectly electrical conducting (PEC) and dielectric random rough surfaces in microwave remote sensing. The Coifman wavelets or Coiflets are employed to implement Galerkin’s procedure in the method of moments (MoM). Due to the high-precision one-point quadrature, the Coiflets yield fast evaluations of the most off-diagonal entries, reducing the matrix fill effort from O(N^2) to O(N). The orthogonality and Riesz basis of the Coiflets generate well conditioned impedance matrix, with rapid convergence for the conjugate gradient solver. The resulting impedance matrix is further sparsified by the matrix-formed standard fast wavelet transform (SFWT). By properly selecting multiresolution levels of the total transformation matrix, the solution precision can be enhanced while matrix sparsity and memory consumption have not been noticeably sacrificed. The unified fast scattering algorithm for dielectric random rough surfaces can asymptotically reduce to the PEC case when the loss tangent grows extremely large. Numerical results demonstrate that the reduced PEC model does not suffer from ill-posed problems. Compared with previous publications and laboratory measurements, good agreement is observed.

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Date Created
2016

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Synthesis and characterization of erbium compound nanowires as high gain optical materials

Description

Integrated photonics requires high gain optical materials in the telecom wavelength range for optical amplifiers and coherent light sources. Erbium (Er) containing materials are ideal candidates due to the 1.5 μm emission from Er3+ ions. However, the Er density in

Integrated photonics requires high gain optical materials in the telecom wavelength range for optical amplifiers and coherent light sources. Erbium (Er) containing materials are ideal candidates due to the 1.5 μm emission from Er3+ ions. However, the Er density in typical Er-doped materials is less than 1 x 1020 cm-3, thus limiting the maximum optical gain to a few dB/cm, too small to be useful for integrated photonics applications. Er compounds could potentially solve this problem since they contain much higher Er density. So far the existing Er compounds suffer from short lifetime and strong upconversion effects, mainly due to poor quality of crystals produced by various methods of thin film growth and deposition. This dissertation explores a new Er compound: erbium chloride silicate (ECS, Er3(SiO4)2Cl ) in the nanowire form, which facilitates the growth of high quality single crystals. Growth methods for such single crystal ECS nanowires have been established. Various structural and optical characterizations have been carried out. The high crystal quality of ECS material leads to a long lifetime of the first excited state of Er3+ ions up to 1 ms at Er density higher than 1022 cm-3. This Er lifetime-density product was found to be the largest among all Er containing materials. A unique integrating sphere method was developed to measure the absorption cross section of ECS nanowires from 440 to 1580 nm. Pump-probe experiments demonstrated a 644 dB/cm signal enhancement from a single ECS wire. It was estimated that such large signal enhancement can overcome the absorption to result in a net material gain, but not sufficient to compensate waveguide propagation loss. In order to suppress the upconversion process in ECS, Ytterbium (Yb) and Yttrium (Y) ions are introduced as substituent ions of Er in the ECS crystal structure to reduce Er density. While the addition of Yb ions only partially succeeded, erbium yttrium chloride silicate (EYCS) with controllable Er density was synthesized successfully. EYCS with 30 at. % Er was found to be the best. It shows the strongest PL emission at 1.5 μm, and thus can be potentially used as a high gain material.

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Date Created
2013

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Optical and crystal structure characterizations of nanowires for infrared applications

Description

Semiconductor nanowires (NWs) are one dimensional materials and have size quantization effect when the diameter is sufficiently small. They can serve as optical wave guides along the length direction and contain optically active gain at the same time. Due to

Semiconductor nanowires (NWs) are one dimensional materials and have size quantization effect when the diameter is sufficiently small. They can serve as optical wave guides along the length direction and contain optically active gain at the same time. Due to these unique properties, NWs are now very promising and extensively studied for nanoscale optoelectronic applications. A systematic and comprehensive optical and microstructural study of several important infrared semiconductor NWs is presented in this thesis, which includes InAs, PbS, InGaAs, erbium chloride silicate and erbium silicate. Micro-photoluminescence (PL) and transmission electron microscope (TEM) were utilized in conjunction to characterize the optical and microstructure of these wires. The focus of this thesis is on optical study of semiconductor NWs in the mid-infrared wavelengths. First, differently structured InAs NWs grown using various methods were characterized and compared. Three main PL peaks which are below, near and above InAs bandgap, respectively, were observed. The octadecylthiol self-assembled monolayer was employed to passivate the surface of InAs NWs to eliminate or reduce the effects of the surface states. The band-edge emission from wurtzite-structured NWs was completely recovered after passivatoin. The passivated NWs showed very good stability in air and under heat. In the second part, mid-infrared optical study was conducted on PbS wires of subwavelength diameter and lasing was demonstrated under optical pumping. The PbS wires were grown on Si substrate using chemical vapor deposition and have a rock-salt cubic structure. Single-mode lasing at the wavelength of ~3000-4000 nm was obtained from single as-grown PbS wire up to the temperature of 115 K. PL characterization was also utilized to demonstrate the highest crystallinity of the vertical arrays of InP and InGaAs/InP composition-graded heterostructure NWs made by a top-down fabrication method. TEM-related measurements were performed to study the crystal structures and elemental compositions of the Er-compound core-shell NWs. The core-shell NWs consist of an orthorhombic-structured erbium chloride silicate shell and a cubic-structured silicon core. These NWs provide unique Si-compatible materials with emission at 1530 nm for optical communications and solid state lasers.

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Date Created
2011

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Neuromorphic controller for low power systems from devices to circuits

Description

A workload-aware low-power neuromorphic controller for dynamic power and thermal management in VLSI systems is presented. The neuromorphic controller predicts future workload and temperature values based on the past values and CPU performance counters and preemptively regulates supply voltage and

A workload-aware low-power neuromorphic controller for dynamic power and thermal management in VLSI systems is presented. The neuromorphic controller predicts future workload and temperature values based on the past values and CPU performance counters and preemptively regulates supply voltage and frequency. System-level measurements from stateof-the-art commercial microprocessors are used to get workload, temperature and CPU performance counter values. The controller is designed and simulated using circuit-design and synthesis tools. At device-level, on-chip planar inductors suffer from low inductance occupying large chip area. On-chip inductors with integrated magnetic materials are designed, simulated and fabricated to explore performance-efficiency trade offs and explore potential applications such as resonant clocking and on-chip voltage regulation. A system level study is conducted to evaluate the effect of on-chip voltage regulator employing magnetic inductors as the output filter. It is concluded that neuromorphic power controller is beneficial for fine-grained per-core power management in conjunction with on-chip voltage regulators utilizing scaled magnetic inductors.

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Date Created
2011

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New measurement techniques and their applications in single molecule electronics

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Studying charge transport through single molecules tethered between two metal electrodes is of fundamental importance in molecular electronics. Over the years, a variety of methods have been developed in attempts of performing such measurements. However, the limitation of these techniques

Studying charge transport through single molecules tethered between two metal electrodes is of fundamental importance in molecular electronics. Over the years, a variety of methods have been developed in attempts of performing such measurements. However, the limitation of these techniques is still one of the factors that prohibit one from gaining a thorough understanding of single molecule junctions. Firstly, the time resolution of experiments is typically limited to milli to microseconds, while molecular dynamics simulations are carried out on the time scale of pico to nanoseconds. A huge gap therefore persists between the theory and the experiments. This thesis demonstrates a nanosecond scale measurement of the gold atomic contact breakdown process. A combined setup of DC and AC circuits is employed, where the AC circuit reveals interesting observations in nanosecond scale not previously seen using conventional DC circuits. The breakdown time of gold atomic contacts is determined to be faster than 0.1 ns and subtle atomic events are observed within nanoseconds. Furthermore, a new method based on the scanning tunneling microscope break junction (STM-BJ) technique is developed to rapidly record thousands of I-V curves from repeatedly formed single molecule junctions. 2-dimensional I-V and conductance-voltage (G-V) histograms constructed using the acquired data allow for more meaningful statistical analysis to single molecule I-V characteristics. The bias voltage adds an additional dimension to the conventional single molecule conductance measurement. This method also allows one to perform transition voltage spectra (TVS) for individual junctions and to study the correlation between the conductance and the tunneling barrier height. The variation of measured conductance values is found to be primarily determined by the poorly defined contact geometry between the molecule and metal electrodes, rather than the tunnel barrier height. In addition, the rapid I-V technique is also found useful in studying thermoelectric effect in single molecule junctions. When applying a temperature gradient between the STM tip and substrate in air, the offset current at zero bias in the I-V characteristics is a measure of thermoelectric current. The rapid I-V technique allows for statistical analysis of such offset current at different temperature gradients and thus the Seebeck coefficient of single molecule junctions is measured. Combining with single molecule TVS, the Seebeck coefficient is also found to be a measure of tunnel barrier height.

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2012