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Nat Mater. 2010 May;9(5):403-6. doi: 10.1038/nmat2748. Epub 2010 Apr 18.

Complementary resistive switches for passive nanocrossbar memories.

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Institut für Werkstoffe der Elektrotechnik 2, RWTH Aachen University, 52056 Aachen, Germany.


On the road towards higher memory density and computer performance, a significant improvement in energy efficiency constitutes the dominant goal in future information technology. Passive crossbar arrays of memristive elements were suggested a decade ago as non-volatile random access memories (RAM) and can also be used for reconfigurable logic circuits. As such they represent an interesting alternative to the conventional von Neumann based computer chip architectures. Crossbar architectures hold the promise of a significant reduction in energy consumption because of their ultimate scaling potential and because they allow for a local fusion of logic and memory, thus avoiding energy consumption by data transfer on the chip. However, the expected paradigm change has not yet taken place because the general problem of selecting a designated cell within a passive crossbar array without interference from sneak-path currents through neighbouring cells has not yet been solved satisfactorily. Here we introduce a complementary resistive switch. It consists of two antiserial memristive elements and allows for the construction of large passive crossbar arrays by solving the sneak path problem in combination with a drastic reduction of the power consumption.


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