Combinatorial Study of Ag-Te Thin Films and Their Application as Cation Supply Layer in CBRAM Cells.

Research paper by Wouter W Devulder, Karl K Opsomer, Johan J Meersschaut, Davy D Deduytsche, Malgorzata M Jurczak, Ludovic L Goux, Christophe C Detavernier

Indexed on: 11 Apr '15Published on: 11 Apr '15Published in: ACS Combinatorial Science


In this work, we investigate binary Ag-Te thin films and their functionality as a cation supply layer in conductive bridge random access memory devices. A combinatorial sputter deposition technique is used to deposit a graded Ag(x)Te(1-x) (0 < x < 1) layer with varying composition as a function of the position on the substrate. The crystallinity, surface morphology, and material stability under thermal treatment as a function of the composition of the material are investigated. From this screening, a narrow composition range between 33 and 38 at% Te is selected which shows a good morphology and a high melting temperature. Functionality of a single Ag(2-δ)Te composition as cation supply layer in CBRAM with dedicated Al2O3 switching layer is then investigated by implementing it in 580 μm diameter dot Pt/Ag(2-δ)Te/Al2O3/Si cells. Switching properties are investigated and compared to cells with a pure Ag cation supply layer. An improved cycling behavior is observed when Te is added compared to pure Ag, which we relate to the ionic conducting properties of Ag2Te and the preferred formation of Ag-Te phases.