Publication
Advanced Electronic Materials
Paper

Reversing A Decades-Long Scaling Law of Dielectric Breakdown using Hydrogen-Plasma-Treated HfO2 ReRAM Devices

View publication

Abstract

Dielectric breakdown (BD) is known to cause component failure in electronic devices and high-voltage power lines over many decades. In recent years, this failure mechanism has been exploited to intentionally form nanoscale filaments in resistive random-access-memory (ReRAM) devices for artificial intelligence (AI). The statistical nature of this failure mechanism, known as the inverse size scaling law based on the weakest-link theory, dictates the ever-higher forming voltages for ReRAM devices, in turn, requiring additional peripheral transistors. This law also causes diminishing lifetimes of electronic components for future generations of very-large-integrated circuits (VLSI) technology. Currently, the semiconductor industry faces these scaling barriers limiting the miniaturization of both VLSI and AI hardware technology. Here, experimental evidence of a reverse area dependence is presented by introducing an innovative fabrication process with a hydrogen-plasma-treated layer in a bilayer HfO2 structure. Using joint order statistics rather than traditional extreme-value statistics, a physics-based statistical model is developed in agreement with the experimental data, thus demonstrating that there is no fundamental reason preventing this law from being reversed or altered. These findings will have a significant impact on both technology scaling and fabrication innovation for electronic and/or bioinspired nanomaterials; moreover, stimulate much research in physics, statistics, and reliability.

Date

25 Jul 2023

Publication

Advanced Electronic Materials

Authors

Share