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Comparison of resistive switching characteristics using copper and aluminum electrodes on GeOx/W cross-point memories

Sheikh Ziaur Rahaman and Siddheswar Maikap*

Author Affiliations

Thin Film Nanotech Lab., Department of Electronic Engineering, Chang Gung University, 259 Wen-Hwa 1st Rd., Kwei-Shan, Tao-Yuan 333, Taiwan

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2013, 8:509  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-8-509

Published: 5 December 2013


Comparison of resistive switching memory characteristics using copper (Cu) and aluminum (Al) electrodes on GeOx/W cross-points has been reported under low current compliances (CCs) of 1 nA to 50 μA. The cross-point memory devices are observed by high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM). Improved memory characteristics are observed for the Cu/GeOx/W structures as compared to the Al/GeOx/W cross-points owing to AlOx formation at the Al/GeOx interface. The RESET current increases with the increase of the CCs varying from 1 nA to 50 μA for the Cu electrode devices, while the RESET current is high (>1 mA) and independent of CCs varying from 1 nA to 500 μA for the Al electrode devices. An extra formation voltage is needed for the Al/GeOx/W devices, while a low operation voltage of ±2 V is needed for the Cu/GeOx/W cross-point devices. Repeatable bipolar resistive switching characteristics of the Cu/GeOx/W cross-point memory devices are observed with CC varying from 1 nA to 50 μA, and unipolar resistive switching is observed with CC >100 μA. High resistance ratios of 102 to 104 for the bipolar mode (CCs of 1 nA to 50 μA) and approximately 108 for the unipolar mode are obtained for the Cu/GeOx/W cross-points. In addition, repeatable switching cycles and data retention of 103 s are observed under a low current of 1 nA for future low-power, high-density, nonvolatile, nanoscale memory applications.

Memory; Resistive switches; GeOx; Copper; Aluminum; Solid electrolyte