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Electric field and temperature scaling of polarization reversal in silicon doped hafnium oxide ferroelectric thin films

: Zhou, D.Y.; Guan, Y.; Vopson, M.M.; Xu, J.; Liang, H.L.; Cao, F.; Dong, X.L.; Mueller, J.; Schenk, T.; Schroeder, U.


Acta Materialia 99 (2015), S.240-246
ISSN: 1359-6454
Fraunhofer IPMS ()

HfO2-based binary lead-free ferroelectrics show promising properties for non-volatile memory applications, providing that their polarization reversal behavior is fully understood. In this work, temperature-dependent polarization hysteresis measured over a wide applied field range has been investigated for Si-doped HfO2 ferroelectric thin films. Our study indicates that in the low and medium electric field regimes (E < twofold coercive field, 2E(c)), the reversal process is dominated by the thermal activation on domain wall motion and domain nucleation; while in the high-field regime (E > 2E(c)), a non-equilibrium nucleation-limited-switching mechanism dominates the reversal process. The optimum field for ferroelectric random access memory (FeRAM) applications was determined to be around 2.0 MV/cm, which translates into a 2.0 V potential applied across the 10 nm thick films.