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Beltsville, MD, United States

Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 99.99K | Year: 2009

The recent discovery of a high-mobility two-dimensional electron gas at the interface between a polar oxide (LaAlO3) and a non-polar oxide (SrTiO3) has fueled significant interest in oxide-based electronics. The interface between these materials has been shown to be switchable between a metallic and insulating state when the LaAlO3 thickness is exactly 3 unit cells. The primary objective of this STTR effort is to develop key materials processes that will enable ultra-high-density logic and memory operations in novel physical systems. Phase I demonstrations will focus on the development of reliable methodologies for producing high-quality oxide heterostructures such as 3 unit cell thick LaAlO3 films deposited on TiO2-terminated SrTiO3 substrates. The effort addresses reliable high-density methods for producing ohmic contacts to the LaAlO3/SrTiO3 interface, and demonstration of a prototype transistor design. A three terminal device whose behavior is similar to a conventional FET will be fabricated and the operation of this device will be characterized extensively over the entire operating range (both voltage/current and frequency). Neocera is teaming up with University of Pittsburgh in undertaking this STTR effort.   BENEFIT: Successful accomplishment of program objectives will enable a novel oxide electronics-based platform for a variety of military and civilian applications. Examples include ultra-high density integration of reconfigurable logic and non-volatile memories with impact for lightweight low-power computing needs in land air & space vehicles. In the commercial sector, development of nanoscale memories and transistors may be applied to consumer electronics, sensitive charge detection, and biomedical applications.)

Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 99.91K | Year: 2008

Space flight cryocoolers will be able to handle limited heat loads at their expected operating temperatures and the current leads may be the dominant contributor to the heat load. In the present SBIR, we propose an innovative approach that could significantly reduce heat loads introduced by current carrying leads in a variety of space flight cryocoolers. Our approach uses high-temperature superconducting (HTS) current leads with zero dissipation for DC currents, developed on flexible low-thermal conductivity substrates (ceramic yttria stabilized zirconia). The unique film/substrate combination when implemented for developing low-thermal budget DC current leads is expected to allow thermal loads less than 1 mW when operated between 80K and 10K. Successful accomplishment of program objectives will lead to a unique, low thermal load, superconducting current lead platform, significantly enhancing the over all performance of the cryogenic subsystems.

Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 99.89K | Year: 2008

The primary objective of this SBIR is to develop epitaxial GaN films with threading dislocation density less than 10^6 cm^-2. We propose an innovative approach combining two Pulsed Energy technologies: plasma-energy-controlled Pulsed Laser Deposition (PLD) to deposit high quality epitaxial GaN films, and in situ Pulsed Energy Annealing to decrease the dislocation density ( to < 10^6 cm-2). Unlike low energetic techniques (such as MBE or CVD), PLD's energetic range of pulsed plasma can be controlled with process parameters, resulting in a wide range of plasma energetic for film deposition. Recently, Neocera fabricated high quality epitaxial GaN films using the plasma-energy-controlled PLD process, resulting in strong photoluminescent emission at room temperature. This approach is further extended in this Phase I, with an in-situ "Pulsed" Energy Annealing, to greatly improve the film crystallinity. The pulsed laser or pulsed electron beam, with 20-50 ns pulse width and high power density (~10^8W/cm^2), induces melting and a rapid epitaxial formation in ~100 nanoseconds, anneling out dislocations. This unique combination of two pulsed energy technologies is expected to provide the most advanced deposition process for epitaxial GaN films with low dislocation density.

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