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In this paper we present experimental evidence for single-electron phenomena in solid-state memories based on silicon nanocrystals as storage elements. The stepwise evolution of the channel current of a written memory cell biased in the subthreshold regime is monitored by means of a purposely designed low noise acquisition system with a bandwidth of 1 kHz. Each channel current step-up is ascribed to a single-electron emission from the silicon nanocrystal to the silicon substrate and each current step-down is ascribed to a single-electron capture from the silicon substrate into the silicon nanocrystal. The effect of the measurement system bandwidth on the detection of single-electron events is discussed and a procedure for extracting the threshold voltage shift associated to these events is proposed. It is shown that single-electron charging and discharging events in a memory cell with an area of 4.5 × 10−10 …
American Scientific Publishers
Publication date: 
1 Jan 2007

Calogero Pace, Felice Crupi, D Corso, S Lombardo

Biblio References: 
Volume: 7 Issue: 1 Pages: 322-328
Journal of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology