Skip to Main Content
Your organization might have access to this article on the publisher's site. To check, click on this link:http://dx.doi.org/+10.1063/1.1557373
Very high density magnetoresistance random access memory (MRAM) cells may be subject to thermal upset. This article describes designs that enhance thermal stability and increase ultimate density by using the combination of heat and magnetic field for writing data. The basic storage mechanism can be shape anisotropy, the coupling between an antiferromagnetic layer and a ferromagnetic layer, or a combination of the two. Two designs are described in this article. The first uses a low Curie point material with high shape anisotropy at room temperature. These cells use active semiconductor devices to restrict heating current to only one cell in an array. The second approach employs the interface coupling between a ferromagnetic film and an antiferromagnetic film as the storage mechansism. A cell may be written by heating above the Néel temperature and cooling the interface in a magnetic field by using orthogonal lines for heating and magnetic field. Heating and cooling times are a few nanoseconds. These design approaches could lead to stable MRAM cells with diameters less than 0.1 μm and requiring lower drive currents. © 2003 American Institute of Physics.