SOT-MRAM (spin-orbit torque MRAM) has the potential to challenge STT-MRAM, as it is a faster, denser and much more efficient memory technology.

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SOT-MRAM vs STT-MRAM bitcell

SOT-MRAM devices feature switching of the free magnetic layer done by injecting an in-plane current in an adjacent SOT layer, unlike STT-MRAM where the current is injected perpendicularly into the magnetic tunnel junction and the read and write operation is performed through the same path.

In June 2018, researchers from Imec fabricated SOT-MRAM devices on 300mm wafers using CMOS compatible processes, for the first time.

The latest SOT-MRAM news

NTU and TSMC researchers develop a new SOT-MRAM structure with high spin-orbital Hall conductivity

Researchers from National Taiwan University in collaboration with TSMC developed a new SOT-MRAM device structure, that features sizable orbital currents. This research promises a pathway for enhancing SOT-MRAM performance by harnessing both the conventional spin currents and the emergent orbital currents.

NTU TSMC PtCr Alloys SOT-MRAMThe new device is based on 3d light transition metals (such as V and Cr) that are incorporated into the classical spin Hall metal Pt. The Pt-Cr alloy enhances the charge-to-spin conversion efficiency which can realize high spin-orbital Hall conductivity, beyond the conventional spin Hall limit.

Read the full story Posted: Feb 27,2022

Researchers demonstrate that chalcogenide materials can be highly suitable for SOT-MRAM

Researchers from National Taiwan University demonstrate that chalcogenide material BiTe with non-epitaxial structure can give rise to a giant spin Hall ratio and SOT efficiency (~ 200%) without obvious evidence of topologically-protected surface state (TSS).

BiTe material system for SOT-MRAM schema (NUS)

The researchers explain that a clear thickness-dependent increase of the SOT efficiency indicates that the origin of this effect is from the bulk spin-orbit interaction of such materials system. Efficient current-induced switching through SOT is also demonstrated with a low zero-thermal critical switching current density (~ 6×105 A/cm2).

Read the full story Posted: Feb 18,2020

Researchers developed an ultra low power BiSb-based SOT MRAM device

Researchers from the Tokyo Institute of Technology developed an ultrahigh-efficiency SOT magnetization switching in fully sputtered BiSb–(Co/Pt) multilayers with large perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA).

Scheme of ultra low power BiSb SOT-MRAM device (Tokyo IT)

The new device offers a large spin Hall angle and high electrical conductivity, thus satisfying all the three requirements for SOT-MRAM implementation. The researchers managed to achieve robust SOT magnetization at a low current density despite the large PMA field.

Read the full story Posted: Feb 23,2022

Researchers find that FGT is an excellent material for SOT-MRAM devices

Researchers from Seoul's National University and Pohang's University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) report that a 2D iron germanium telluride (Fe3GeTe2, or FGT) layer is an excellent candidate to be used as the basis SOT-MRAM material.

Fe3GeTe2-based SOT-MRAM device structure (POSTECH / SNU)

An SOT-MRAM based on FGT is highly energy-efficient, in fact the researchers say that the measured magnitude of SOT per applied current density is two orders of magnitude larger than the values reported previously for other candidate materials.

Read the full story Posted: Dec 11,2020

Researchers in Japan developed a high-speed SOT-MRAM memory cell compatible with 300mm Si CMOS technology

Researchers at Tohoku University demonstrated a high-speed spin-orbit-torque MRAM (SOT-MRAM) memory cell compatible with 300 mm Si CMOS technology.

The SOT device achieved high-speed switching (down to 0.35 ns) and a high thermal stability factor (E/kBT 70) which the researchers say is sufficient for high speed non-volatile memory applications. The device can withstand annealing at 400°C. The researchers used these devices to create a complete SOT-MRAM memory cell.

Read the full story Posted: Dec 10,2019

SOT-MRAM developer Antaios raises $11 million

SOT-MRAM developer Antaios raised $11 million from VCs and Applied Ventures, to accelerate its next-generation memory development and develop new strategic partnerships.

SOT-MRAM vs STT-MRAM bitcell

SOT-MRAM devices feature switching of the free magnetic layer done by injecting an in-plane current in an adjacent SOT layer, unlike STT-MRAM where the current is injected perpendicularly into the magnetic tunnel junction and the read and write operation is performed through the same path.

Read the full story Posted: Sep 17,2020

Taiwan's Semiconductor Research Institute developed an SOT-MRAM device based on a PMA technique

Researchers at Taiwan's Semiconductor Research Institute (TSRI) unveiled a new SOT-MRAM memory device that they developed in collaboration with University scientists.

TSRI SOT MRAM device photo

The new device uses a perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) technique. According to the TSRI researchers, they are the second team to successfully produce MRAM chips based on PMA (Intel is the first team to have achieved this).

Read the full story Posted: Nov 10,2021