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Designing crystallization to tune the performance of phase-change memory: rules of hierarchical melt and coordinate bond

Jin Zhao1,2,3*, Wen-Xiong Song1*, Tianjiao Xin1, Zhitang Song1*

1 State Key Laboratory of Functional Materials for Informatics, Shanghai Institute of Microsystem and Information, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 200050, China

2 School of Physical Science and Technology, Shanghai Tech University, Shanghai 201210, China

3 University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100049, China

* Corresponding authors emails: zhaojin@mail.sim.ac.cn, songwx@mail.sim.ac.cn, ztsong@mail.sim.ac.cn
DOI10.24435/materialscloud:cs-2a [version v1]

Publication date: Apr 29, 2021

How to cite this record

Jin Zhao, Wen-Xiong Song, Tianjiao Xin, Zhitang Song, Designing crystallization to tune the performance of phase-change memory: rules of hierarchical melt and coordinate bond, Materials Cloud Archive 2021.67 (2021), doi: 10.24435/materialscloud:cs-2a.


While alloy design has practically shown an efficient strategy to mediate two seemingly conflicted performances of writing speed and data retention in phase-change memory, the detailed kinetic pathway of alloy-tuned crystallization is still unclear. Here, we propose hierarchical melt and coordinate bond strategies to solve them, where the former stabilizes a medium-range crystal-like region and the latter provides a rule to stabilize amorphous. The Er0.52Sb2Te3 compound we designed achieves writing speed of 3.2 ns and ten-year data retention of 161 °C. We provide a direct atomic-level evidence that two neighbor Er atoms stabilize a medium-range crystal-like region, acting as a precursor to accelerate crystallization; meanwhile, the essential reason of stabilization originates from the formation of coordinate bonds by sharing lone-pair electrons of chalcogenide atoms with the empty 5d orbitals of Er atoms. The two rules pave the way for the development of storage-class memory with excellent comprehensive performance to achieve next revolutionary technology node.

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Er-Sb-Te Coordinate bond Hierarchical melt Phase change memory Experimental

Version history:

2021.67 (version v1) [This version] Apr 29, 2021 DOI10.24435/materialscloud:cs-2a