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Hafnium Oxide Ferroelectric Thin Film for Ferroelectric Random-Access Memory (FeRAM) Manufacturing

Increases Ferroelectricity and Thermal Retention in Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) Applications

This hafnium oxide ferroelectric thin film increases ferroelectricity and thermal retention for manufacturing ferroelectric random-access memory (FeRAM). Ferroelectric random-access memory (FeRAM) is a promising emerging technology. It displays significantly lower operation voltage, read/write times, and higher endurance than flash memory. However, current FeRAM technologies suffer from poor scalability and difficulty integrating into the complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) process, an instrumental component of modern wireless communications. Ferroelectric hafnium oxide is a new and growing field offering a solution.


Hafnium oxide-based ferroelectric thin films have been explored over the last decade since discovering silicon-doped hafnium oxide could produce a hysteresis and remanent polarization. In varying the silicone doping, it results in an array of films from ferroelectric to anti-ferroelectric. Ferroelectric hafnium is highly CMOS compatible, with its ultra-thin nature providing excellent scalability for a wide range of applications.


Researchers at the University of Florida have developed a hafnium oxide ferroelectric thin film through in situ hydrogen plasma treatment. It increases the efficacy of ferroelectric film production and ensures higher ferroelectricity and thermal retention.



Hafnium oxide ferroelectric thin films for manufacturing ferroelectric random-access memory (FeRAM), increasing ferroelectricity and thermal retention



  • Improves production of ferroelectric thin films, increasing the scalability and application of FeRAM in CMOS applications
  • Increases thermal retention, enabling the commercial adoption of hafnium oxide ferroelectric thin films for nonvolatile memory device applications


Hafnium oxide-based ferroelectric thin films have expanded capabilities for complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) applications. Applying oxygen (O2) and the sequential O2, hydrogen (H2) plasma oxidation controls the behavior of the resulting films from anti-ferroelectric to ferroelectric. For the sequential O2, H2 plasma films, the application of the O2 plasma occurs after the precursor pulse, followed by the H2 plasma. Using O2 and sequential O2, H2 plasma during the atomic layer depositions (ALD) offers significant tuning of the film properties from anti-ferroelectric to ferroelectric. It partially reduces the previously deposited oxide, generating oxygen vaccines and enhancing the orthorhombic phase. Adding hydrogen plasma during the atomic layer deposition improves the remanent polarization and thermal retention of the resulting ferroelectric films.

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