This paper presents a study of Cu diffusion at various temperatures in thin SiO2 films and the influence of diffusion conditions on the switching of Programmable Metallization Cell (PMC) devices formed from such Cu-doped films. Film composition and diffusion products were analyzed using secondary ion mass spectroscopy, Rutherford backscattering spectrometry, X-ray diffraction and Raman spectroscopy methods. We found a strong dependence of the diffused Cu concentration, which varied between 0.8 at.% and 10- 3 at.%, on the annealing temperature. X-ray diffraction and Raman studies revealed that Cu does not react with the SiO2 network and remains in elemental form after diffusion for the annealing conditions used. PMC resistive memory cells were fabricated with such Cu-diffused SiO2 films and device performance, including the stability of the switching voltage, is discussed in the context of the material characteristics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3293-3298
Number of pages6
JournalThin Solid Films
Issue number12
StatePublished - Apr 2 2010


  • compositional characteristics
  • copper diffusion
  • copper-doped silicon dioxide
  • nanoionic devices
  • non-volatile memory
  • silicon dioxide based memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


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