conductive metal-oxide (CMOx) technology

Conductive metal-oxide (CMOx) technology is a nonvolatile storage technology that works by moving oxygen ions between conductive and insulating metal-oxide layers within a single chip.

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Conductive metal-oxide (CMOx) technology is a nonvolatile storage technology that works by moving oxygen ions between conductive and insulating metal-oxide layers within a single chip.

In the erased state, oxygen ions concentrate in the conductive metal oxide (CMO) layer of the chip. An external electric field causes the ions, which carry electrical charges, to migrate from the CMO layer to the insulating metal-oxide (IMO) layer. As the ion concentration decreases in the CMO layer and increases in the IMO layer, the relative conductivity values of the layers change. By manipulating the external electric field, the conductivity values of the CMO and IMO layers can be controlled at high speed.

A CMOx device employs a form of resistive technology, but its operation differs from that of other resistive nonvolatile storage devices. According to the developer, Unity Semiconductor, CMOx technology might offer up to four times the storage density and 10 times the read/write speed of typical NAND flash memory devices. According to Unity, CMOx device manufacture can be carried out in established complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) foundries.

CMOx is a trademark of Unity Semiconductor, Inc.

This was first published in January 2012

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