MRS Spring Meeting 2008
Conference paper

SET characteristics of phase change bridge devices

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Scaling studies have demonstrated that Phase Change Random Access Memory (PCRAM) is one of the most promising candidates for future non-volatile memory applications. The search for suitable phase change materials with optimized properties is therefore actively pursuit. In this paper, SET (crystallization) characteristics of an ultra fast switching material Ge15Sb 85 in phase change memory bridge cell devices are presented. It was found that reproducible switching between two stable states with one decade resistance contrast and current pulses as short as 10 ns for SET and RESET (reamorphization) operation is possible. Particular emphasis was placed on the difference in crystallization kinetics between the as-deposited and melt-quenched amorphous phase. Evidence is given for the existence of an electrical field as the critical parameter for threshold switching rather than a threshold voltage. For Ge15Sb85 a threshold switching field of 9MV/m was measured and it was shown that switching from the melt-quenched amorphous phase to the crystalline phase is about 600 times faster than crystallization from the as-deposited amorphous phase. © 2008 Materials Research Society.