Novel chalcogenide optoelectronic and nanophotonic information storage and processing devices.
University of Southampton, Faculty of Physical and Applied Sciences,
This project is focused on the application of new electronic and optical materials. In particular it involves examining the use of chalcogenide thin films as phase change and ion conducting glasses for emerging optoelectronic applications. The ability of this group of materials to easily change their state from glass to crystal has meant that they have been widely used in CD's and DVDs. However, their ability to also conduct electrons and ions, promises novel solutions for next generation logic and memory devices which will take us in the short term beyond the limits of the silicon chip and, into the world of neuromorphic cognitive computing (computers that think and adapt). Additionally, this reversible change in the structure of these thin films allows their utilisation in ultra-high speed optical and optoelectronic switches to power the internet and future computers.
Three main goals are pursued within this research. First, next generation phase change (PCRAM) and nano-ionic resistive (ReRAM) memory is pursued for faster, non-volatile high density data storage. Secondly, the design of novel processing elements like next generation logic gates enabling neuromorphic cognitive processing and data storage in one structure based on material properties. Finally, the integration of phase change thin films with metamaterial arrays to produce electro-optic and all optical switches for future photonic computers and communication networks.
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