The team studied the resistive switching effect in silver iodide, a well known silver ion conductor. The scientists fabricated simple microscale crossbars consisting of silver iodide sandwiched between two metal electrodes.

Multibit storage

The electrical resistance of their memory cells was controlled by voltage and current signals with pulse lengths down to 50 ns. While conventional memory cells can only store a single bit (ON or OFF), resistive switches have the potential of storing multiple bit information in a single cell.

The researchers observed at least five quantized resistances within a current window of 1–10 µA, which fitted well to an integer multiple of single atomic point contact conductivity.

Additional details can be found in the journal Nanotechnology.