Enabling the more-than-Moore era with innovative device solutions
M. Mert Torunbalcı
Abstract: As semiconductor technology has slowed down, there have been significant efforts in exploring emerging materials and physical concepts for logic, memory, and sensory devices to enable new functionalities in the more-than-Moore era.
In this talk, I will first introduce a novel process platform developed for the reliable manufacturing of wafer-level vacuum packaged MEMS (Micro-electro-mechanical systems) sensors. Then, I will describe two concrete examples of how conventional MEMS techniques can be combined with other domains to enable novel functionalities for the more-than-Moore era of electronics.
In the first example, I will describe the development of microwave circulators that are crucial building blocks in next-generation microwave systems for Simultaneous Transmit and Receive (STAR) radios and quantum computers. State-of-the-art circulators are made by ferromagnets that are bulky and CMOS incompatible. I will introduce a unique magnet-free MEMS circulator using mechanical modulation of three identical Film Bulk Acoustic Resonators (FBARs) with appropriate phase differences, achieving large isolation with an excellent insertion loss and power handling at GHz frequencies. The single-packaged FBAR circulator chip is a promising RF MEMS component to complement the ongoing worldwide effort in developing quantum computers and STAR radios for full-duplex communication systems.
In the second example, I will present the magnetoelectric spin-orbit (MESO) device concept, recently introduced by Intel, as a promising candidate as a drop-in replacement of CMOS technology for energy-efficient microprocessors. The key building block of MESO is a charge-to-spin magnetoelectric (ME) transducer made out of thin-film multiferroics or composite piezoelectric/ferromagnetic materials. I will describe a MEMS-inspired approach to experimentally demonstrate the ME concept by using a thin-film CoFeB ferromagnet at the base of an AlN cantilever that is coupled to each other by the ME effect. In order to illustrate how this approach can be used to build other innovative device architectures, I will demonstrate a MEMS acoustic resonator-driven spin-torque nano oscillator (STNO) with enhanced oscillator linewidth.
I will conclude the talk by sketching future research for emerging directions with the same theme of combining conventional MEMS techniques with other domains to contribute to the more- than-Moore era of electronics.