A team of Taiwanese researchers yesterday said they had collaborated with Japanese researchers to develop a new memory device that can transmit both electronic and light signals.
The team comprised researchers from National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU), National Taiwan University and Japan’s Kyushu University, NTNU professor of electro-optical engineering Lee Ya-ju (李亞儒) told a news conference in Taipei.
Many researchers are seeking to produce next-generation memory devices to replace the widely used flash memory and while resistive random access memory (RRAM) is considered an alternative, its operational speed has some room for improvement, Lee said.
Photo courtesy of the Ministry of Science and Technology
Semiconductor researchers have combined RRAM and light-emitting diodes to develop light-emitting memory devices, but the fabrication process is more complicated due to the need to integrate various materials, he said.
To overcome the problem, Lee said his team turned to cesium lead bromide to develop perovskite quantum dots for a memory device.
Perovskite is a natural mineral that can be chemically synthesized and has been widely used in semiconductor manufacturing.
Using cesium lead bromide is one of the ways to synthesize perovskite, but some toxicity of lead has to be tolerated for the material to be stable, Lee said.
The team also used silver to make the device’s electrodes, he added.
When they applied different voltages to the device, the varieties of ions in the device changed, allowing it to store and read data electronically or optically, Lee said.
Through perovskite quantum dots of different sizes, the device emits different colors to indicate whether it is reading ones or zeros, he said.
The team’s findings were published in the journal Nature Communications in July.
The team’s technique might change the future of consumer electronics, given light transmits data faster than electronics, NTNU College of Technology and Engineering dean Kao Wen-chung (高文忠) said.
The research has expanded the use of perovskite and set a new example for the integration of electronics and photonics, said the Ministry of Science and Technology, which funded the project.
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