Multiferroic Memory: A Disruptive Technology or Future Technology?
|Periodical||Solid State Phenomena (Volume 189)|
|Main Theme||Ferroics and Multiferroics|
|Edited by||Hardev Singh Virk and Wolfgang Kleemann|
|Citation||Ashok Kumar et al., 2012, Solid State Phenomena, 189, 1|
|Online since||June, 2012|
|Authors||Ashok Kumar, Nora Ortega, Sandra Dussan, Shalini Kumari, Dilsom Sanchez, James Scott, Ram Katiyar|
|Keywords||Bilayers, FeRAM, Magnonic Logics, MERAM, MRAM, Multiferroic, Nonvolatile Memory, Superlattice, Thin Film, Ultrathin Films|
The term "Multiferroic" is coined for a material possessing at least two ferroic orders in the same or composite phase (ferromagnetic, ferroelectric, ferroelastic); if the first two ferroic orders are linearly coupled together it is known as a magnetoelectric (ME) multiferroic. Two kinds of ME multiferroic memory devices are under extensive research based on the philosophy of "switching of polarization by magnetic fields and magnetization by electric fields." Successful switching of ferroic orders will provide an extra degree of freedom to create more logic states. The "switching of polarization by magnetic fields" is useful for magnetic field sensors and for memory elements if, for example, polarization switching is via a very small magnetic field from a coil underneath an integrated circuit. The electric control of magnetization is suitable for nondestructive low-power, high-density magnetically read and electrically written memory elements. If the system possesses additional features, such as propagating magnon (spin wave) excitations at room temperature, additional functional applications may be possible. Magnon-based logic (magnonic) systems have been initiated by various scientists, and prototype devices show potential for future complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) technology. Discovery of high polarization, magnetization, piezoelectric, spin waves (magnon), magneto-electric, photovoltaic, exchange bias coupling, etc. make bismuth ferrite, BiFeO3, one of the widely investigated materials in this decade. Basic multiferroic features of well known room temperature single phase BiFeO3 in bulk and thin films have been discussed. Functional magnetoelectric (ME) properties of some lead-based solid solution perovskite multiferroics are presented and these systems also have a bright future. The prospects and the limitations of the ME-based random access memory (MERAM) are explained in the context of recent discoveries and state of the art research.