Cerium oxide based resistive random access memory devices
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Resistive Random Access Memory (RRAM) is an emerging technology of non-volatile memory (NVM). Although the observation of metal oxide that can undergo an abrupt insulator-metal transition into a conductive state has been known for over 40 years, researchers started investigating those materials for memory applications in late 1990s. It has been considered as the next generation memory technology to replace current flash memory because RRAM has demonstrated feasible switching characteristics and potential to build high density arrays and also RRAM is also compatible with contemporary CMOS processes, which means RRAM can be integrated into current CMOS chips. While the structure of RRAM is a simple metal-insulator-metal (MIM) device, there are numerous materials that exhibit resistive switching. The switching behavior is not only dependent on the switching layer materials but also dependent on the choice of metal electrodes and their interfacial properties. Many metal oxides such as hafnium oxide, titanium oxide, aluminum oxide, nickel oxide (NiO), tantalum oxide and etc. have been studied in details; however, some materials are unexplored such as cerium oxide. In addition to nonvolatile storage applications, RRAM is considered as one of essential elements for advancing neuromorphic computing because of its analog switching and retention characteristics. This thesis investigated CeO[subscript x]-based RRAMs, from its fundamental device characteristics to neuromorphic applications.