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November 21, 2008

Promising 10 Nanometer Graphene Computer memory

A team at Rice University has developed graphene 10 atoms thick and less than 10 nanometers wide.

- it would increase the amount of storage in a two-dimensional array by a factor of five.
- the new switches can be controlled by two terminals instead of three, as in current chips. This will allow for practical three dimensional memory layers.
- being essentially a mechanical device, such chips will consume virtually no power when storing memory
- On/off power ratio of one million to one instead of ten to one for phase change memory [higher is better]
- James Tour said the new switches are also fast; in fact, they react faster than his lab’s current testing systems can measure.
- they’re robust. “We’ve tested it in the lab 20,000 times with no degradation,” said Tour. “Its lifetime is going to be huge, much better than flash memory.”
- Typically, graphene is very hard to think about fabricating commercially,” he said, “but this can be done very easily by deposition.






Electronic two-terminal bistable graphitic memories

Transistors are the basis for electronic switching and memory devices as they exhibit extreme reliabilities with on/off ratios of 10,000–100,000, and billions of these three-terminal devices can be fabricated on single planar substrates. On the other hand, two-terminal devices coupled with a nonlinear current–voltage response can be considered as alternatives provided they have large and reliable on/off ratios and that they can be fabricated on a large scale using conventional or easily accessible methods. Here, we report that two-terminal devices consisting of discontinuous 5–10 nm thin films of graphitic sheets grown by chemical vapour deposition on either nanowires or atop planar silicon oxide exhibit enormous and sharp room-temperature bistable current–voltage behaviour possessing stable, rewritable, non-volatile and non-destructive read memories with on/off ratios of up to 10,000,000 and switching times of up to 1 s (tested limit). A nanoelectromechanical mechanism is proposed for the unusually pronounced switching behaviour in the devices.

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