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Title: Leakage current and resistive switching mechanisms in SrTiO3
Author: Ameiryan Mojarad, Shahin
Awarding Body: University of Newcastle Upon Tyne
Current Institution: University of Newcastle upon Tyne
Date of Award: 2013
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Resistive switching random access memory devices have attracted considerable attention due to exhibiting fast programming, non-destructive readout, low power-consumption, high-density integration, and low fabrication-cost. Resistive switching has been observed in a wide range of materials but the underpinning mechanisms still have not been understood completely. This thesis presents a study of the leakage current and resistive switching mechanisms of SrTiO3 metal-insulator-metal devices fabricated using atomic layer deposition and pulse laser deposition techniques. First, the conduction mechanisms in SrTiO3 are investigated. The leakage current characteristics are highly sensitive to the polarity and magnitude of applied voltage bias, punctuated by sharp increases at high field. The characteristics are also asymmetric with bias and the negative to positive current crossover point always occurs at a negative voltage bias. A model comprising thermionic field emission and tunnelling phenomena is proposed to explain ii the dependence of leakage current upon the device parameters quantitatively. SrTiO3 also demonstrates bipolar switching behaviour where the current-density versus voltage (J-V) characteristics show asymmetry at all temperatures examined, with resistive switching behaviour observed at elevated temperatures. The asymmetry is explained by the relative lack of electron traps at one electrode, which is determined from the symmetric J-V curve obtained at room temperature due to the redistribution of the dominant electrical defects in the film. Evidence is presented for a model of resistive switching that originates from defect diffusion (possibly oxygen vacancies) at high temperatures. Finally, a peculiar resistive switching behaviour was observed in pulse laser deposited SrTiO3. This switching depends on both the amplitude and polarity of the applied voltage, and cannot be described as either bipolar or unipolar resistive switching. This behaviour is termed antipolar due to the opposite polarity of the set voltage relative to the previous reset voltage. The proposed model based on electron injection by tunnelling at interfaces and a Poole-Frenkel mechanism through the bulk is extended to explain the antipolar resistive switching behaviour. This model is quantified by use of a simple mathematical equation to simulate the experimental results.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available