Woburn, MASSACHUSETTS, United States
Woburn, MASSACHUSETTS, United States

Nano-RAM is a proprietary computer memory technology from the company Nantero. It is a type of nonvolatile random access memory based on the position of carbon nanotubes deposited on a chip-like substrate. In theory, the small size of the nanotubes allows for very high density memories. Nantero also refers to it as NRAM. Wikipedia.


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A high-speed memory circuit architecture for arrays of resistive change elements is disclosed. An array of resistive change elements is organized into rows and columns, with each column serviced by a word line and each row serviced by two bit lines. Each row of resistive change elements includes a pair of reference elements and a sense amplifier. The reference elements are resistive components with electrical resistance values between the resistance corresponding to a SET condition and the resistance corresponding to a RESET condition within the resistive change elements being used in the array. A high speed READ operation is performed by discharging one of a rows bit lines through a resistive change element selected by a word line and simultaneously discharging the other of the rows bit lines through of the reference elements and comparing the rate of discharge on the two lines using the rows sense amplifier. Storage state data are transmitted to an output data bus as high speed synchronized data pulses. High speed data is received from an external synchronized data bus and stored by a PROGRAM operation within resistive change elements in a memory array configuration.


Methods for dynamically programming and dynamically reading one or more resistive change elements within a resistive change element array are disclosed. These methods include first pre-charging all of the array lines within a resistive change element array simultaneously and then grounding certain array lines while allowing other array lines to float in order to direct discharge currents through only selected cells. In this way, resistive change elements within resistive change element arrays made up of 1-R cells that is, cells without in situ selection circuitrycan be reliably and rapidly accessed and programed.


Under one aspect, a covered nanotube switch includes: (a) a nanotube element including an unaligned plurality of nanotubes, the nanotube element having a top surface, a bottom surface, and side surfaces; (b) first and second terminals in contact with the nanotube element, wherein the first terminal is disposed on and substantially covers the entire top surface of the nanotube element, and wherein the second terminal contacts at least a portion of the bottom surface of the nanotube element; and (c) control circuitry capable of applying electrical stimulus to the first and second terminals. The nanotube element can switch between a plurality of electronic states in response to a corresponding plurality of electrical stimuli applied by the control circuitry to the first and second terminals. For each different electronic state, the nanotube element provides an electrical pathway of different resistance between the first and second terminals.


The present disclosure is directed toward carbon based diodes, carbon based resistive change memory elements, resistive change memory having resistive change memory elements and carbon based diodes, methods of making carbon based diodes, methods of making resistive change memory elements having carbon based diodes, and methods of making resistive change memory having resistive change memory elements having carbons based diodes. The carbon based diodes can be any suitable type of diode that can be formed using carbon allotropes, such as semiconducting single wall carbon nanotubes (s-SWCNT), semiconducting Buckminsterfullerenes (such as C60 Buckyballs), or semiconducting graphitic layers (layered graphene). The carbon based diodes can be pn junction diodes, Schottky diodes, other any other type of diode formed using a carbon allotrope. The carbon based diodes can be placed at any level of integration in a three dimensional (3D) electronic device such as integrated with components or wiring layers.


Methods for reading and programming one or more resistive change elements within a 1-R resistive change element array are disclosed. These methods include using measurement and storage elements to measure the electrical response of one or more selected cells within an array and then comparing that stored electrical response to the electrical response of a reference element within the array to determine the resistive state of the one or more selected cells. These methods also include programming methods wherein selectable current limiting elements are used to permit or inhibit programming currents from flowing through selected and unselected cells, respectively. These methods further include programing methods that use specific biasing of array lines to provide sufficient programing currents through only selected cells.


Methods for reading and programming one or more resistive change elements within a 1-R resistive change element array are disclosed. These methods include using measurement and storage elements to measure the electrical response of one or more selected cells within an array and then comparing that stored electrical response to the electrical response of a reference element within the array to determine the resistive state of the one or more selected cells. These methods also include programming methods wherein selectable current limiting elements are used to permit or inhibit programming currents from flowing through selected and unselected cells, respectively. These methods further include programing methods that use specific biasing of array lines to provide sufficient programing currents through only selected cells.


Inverter circuits and NAND circuits comprising nanotube based FETs and methods of making the same are described. Such circuits can be fabricating using field effect transistors comprising a source, a drain, a channel region, and a gate, wherein the first channel region includes a fabric of semiconducting nanotubes of a given conductivity type. Such FETs can be arranged to provide inverter circuits in either two-dimension or three-dimensional (stacked) layouts. Design equations based upon consideration of the electrical characteristics of the nanotubes are described which permit optimization of circuit design layout based upon constants that are indicative of the current carrying capacity of the nanotube fabrics of different FETs.


An improved switching material for forming a composite article over a substrate is disclosed. A first volume of nanotubes is combined with a second volume of nanoscopic particles in a predefined ration relative to the first volume of nanotubes to form a mixture. This mixture can then be deposited over a substrate as a relatively thick composite article via a spin coating process. The composite article may possess improved switching properties over that of a nanotube-only switching article. A method for forming substantially uniform nanoscopic particles of carbon, which contains one or more allotropes of carbon, is also disclosed.


Methods for dynamically programming and dynamically reading one or more resistive change elements within a resistive change element array are disclosed. These methods include first pre-charging all of the array lines within a resistive change element array simultaneously and then grounding certain array lines while allowing other array lines to float in order to direct discharge currents through only selected cells. In this way, resistive change elements within resistive change element arrays made up of 1-R cellsthat is, cells without in situ selection circuitrycan be reliably and rapidly accessed and programmed.


Patent
Nantero | Date: 2016-03-04

Methods for passivating a nanotube fabric layer within a nanotube switching device to prevent or otherwise limit the encroachment of an adjacent material layer are disclosed. In some embodiments, a sacrificial material is implanted within a porous nanotube fabric layer to fill in the voids within the porous nanotube fabric layer while one or more other material layers are applied adjacent to the nanotube fabric layer. Once the other material layers are in place, the sacrificial material is removed. In other embodiments, a non-sacrificial filler material (selected and deposited in such a way as to not impair the switching function of the nanotube fabric layer) is used to form a barrier layer within a nanotube fabric layer. In other embodiments, individual nanotube elements are combined with and nanoscopic particles to limit the porosity of a nanotube fabric layer.

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