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Nat Mater. 2008 Dec;7(12):972-7. doi: 10.1038/nmat2330. Epub 2008 Nov 16.

A map for phase-change materials.

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  • 1RWTH Aachen University, I. Physikalisches Institut (IA), 52056 Aachen, Germany.


Phase-change materials are characterized by a unique property portfolio well suited for data storage applications. Here, a first treasure map for phase-change materials is presented on the basis of a fundamental understanding of the bonding characteristics. This map is spanned by two coordinates that can be calculated just from the composition, and represent the degree of ionicity and the tendency towards hybridization ('covalency') of the bonding. A small magnitude of both quantities is an inherent characteristic of phase-change materials. This coordinate scheme enables a prediction of trends for the physical properties on changing stoichiometry.

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