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Electron-Beam Lithographic Studies of the Scaling of Phase-Change Memory

  • Simone Raoux, Charles T. Rettner, Yi-Chou Chen and Geoffrey W. Burr

Abstract

Phase-change random-access memory (PCRAM) is a promising technology for future nonvolatile storage with the added potential for possible impact on dynamic random-access memory technologies. To be successful, however, PCRAM must be able to scale to dimensions on the order of a few tens of nanometers, considering the increasingly tiny memory cells that are projected for future technology nodes. The experiments discussed in this article directly address these scaling properties, examining both the materials themselves and the operation of nanoscale devices. One series of experiments is time-resolved x-ray diffraction studies of ultrathin films and nanostructures. Electron-beam lithography was applied to pattern thin films into nanostructures with dimensions down to 20 nm. The article also includes descriptions of prototype PCRAM devices, successfully fabricated and tested down to phase-change material cross sections of 3 nm × 20 nm. The measurements provide a clear demonstration of the excellent scaling potential offered by this technology.

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Electron-Beam Lithographic Studies of the Scaling of Phase-Change Memory

  • Simone Raoux, Charles T. Rettner, Yi-Chou Chen and Geoffrey W. Burr

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