Logic devices based on magnetism show promise for increasing computational efficiency while decreasing consumed power. They offer zero quiescent power and yet combine novel functions such as programmable logic operation and non-volatile built-in memory1,2,3,4,5. However, practical efforts to adapt a magnetic device to logic suffer from a low signal-to-noise ratio and other performance attributes that are not adequate for logic gates. Rather than exploiting magnetoresistive effects that result from spin-dependent transport of carriers, we have approached the development of a magnetic logic device in a different way: we use the phenomenon of large magnetoresistance found in non-magnetic semiconductors in high electric fields6,7. Here we report a device showing a strong diode characteristic that is highly sensitive to both the sign and the magnitude of an external magnetic field, offering a reversible change between two different characteristic states by the application of a magnetic field. This feature results from magnetic control of carrier generation8 and recombination in an InSb p–n bilayer channel9. Simple circuits combining such elementary devices are fabricated and tested, and Boolean logic functions including AND, OR, NAND and NOR are performed. They are programmed dynamically by external electric or magnetic signals, demonstrating magnetic-field-controlled semiconductor reconfigurable logic at room temperature. This magnetic technology permits a new kind of spintronic device, characterized as a current switch rather than a voltage switch, and provides a simple and compact platform for non-volatile reconfigurable logic devices.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution
Open Access articles citing this article.
Nature Communications Open Access 05 June 2017
Scientific Reports Open Access 25 April 2017
Scientific Reports Open Access 20 April 2017
Subscribe to Journal
Get full journal access for 1 year
only $3.90 per issue
All prices are NET prices.
VAT will be added later in the checkout.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.
All prices are NET prices.
Moodera, J. S. & Leclair, P. Spin electronics: a quantum leap. Nature Mater. 2, 707–708 (2003)
Ney, A., Pampuch, C., Koch, R. & Ploog, K. H. Programmable computing with a single magnetoresistive element. Nature 425, 485–487 (2003)
Dery, H., Dalal, P., Cywinski, L. & Sham, L. J. Spin-based logic in semiconductors for reconfigurable large-scale circuits. Nature 447, 573–576 (2007)
Xu, P. et al. An all-metallic logic gate based on current-driven domain wall motion. Nature Nanotechnol. 3, 97–100 (2008)
Behin-Aein, B., Datta, B. D., Salahuddin, S. & Datta, S. Proposal for an all-spin logic device with built-in memory. Nature Nanotechnol. 5, 266–270 (2010)
Delmo, M. et al. Large positive magnetoresistive effect in silicon induced by the space-charge effect. Nature 457, 1112–1115 (2009)
Wan, C. et al. Geometrical enhancement of low-field magnetoresistance in silicon. Nature 477, 304–307 (2011)
Lee, J. et al. An electrical switching device controlled by a magnetic field-dependent impact ionization process. Appl. Phys. Lett. 97, 253505 (2010)
Hong, J. et al. Magnetic field dependent impact ionization in InSb. Preprint at http://arxiv.org/abs/1206.1094v1 (2012)
Schoonus, J. J. H. M., Bloom, F. L., Wagemans, W., Swagten, H. J. M. & Koopmans, B. Extremely large magnetoresistance in boron-doped silicon. Phys. Rev. Lett. 100, 127202 (2008)
Delmo, M. P., Kasai, S., Kobayashi, K. & Ono, T. Current-controlled magnetoresistance in silicon in non-Ohmic transport regimes. Appl. Phys. Lett. 95, 132106 (2009)
Ciccarelli, C., Park, B. G., Ogawa, S., Ferguson, A. J. & Wunderlich, J. Gate controlled magnetoresistance in a silicon metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect-transistor. Appl. Phys. Lett. 97, 082106 (2010)
Sze, S. M. Semiconductor Devices, Physics and Technology 2nd edn, 78, 118 (Wiley and Sons, 2002)
Chovet, A. Study of recombination processes from the magnetoconcentration effect. Phys. Status Solidi A 28, 633–645 (1975)
Cristoloveanu, S. & Lee, J. H. Magnetoconcentration and related galvanomagnetic effects in non-intrinsic semiconductors. J. Phys. C 13, 5983–5997 (1980)
Fulling, S. A., Sinyakov, M. N. & Tischchenko, S. V. Linearity and the Mathematics of Several Variables 343 (World Scientific, 2000)
Massey, D. J. et al. Impact ionization in submicron silicon devices. J. Appl. Phys. 95, 5931–5933 (2004)
Xie, J. J. et al. Excess noise characteristics of thin AlAsSb APDs. IEEE Trans. Electron. Dev. 59, 1475–1479 (2012)
Hong, J. et al. Local Hall effect in hybrid ferromagnetic/semiconductor devices. Appl. Phys. Lett. 90, 023510 (2007)
Hosomi, M. et al. A novel nonvolatile memory with spin torque transfer magnetization switching: spin-RAM. In Proc. Electron Devices Meeting, 2005 459–462 (IEDM Technical Digest, IEEE International, 2005)
Lim, J. Y., Song, J. D., Ahn, J.-P., Rho, H. & Yang, H. S. Effect of thin intermediate-layer of InAs quantum dots on the physical properties of InSb films grown on (001) GaAs. Thin Solid Films 520, 6589–6594 (2012)
This work was supported by the KIST vision 21 programme, NRF grants funded by MEST (2010-0000506, 2011-0012386 and 2012-0005631), the industrial strategic technology development programme funded by MKE (KI002182), the Dream project, MEST (2012K001280), GRL and the Office of Naval Research.
The authors declare no competing financial interests.
About this article
Cite this article
Joo, S., Kim, T., Shin, S. et al. Magnetic-field-controlled reconfigurable semiconductor logic. Nature 494, 72–76 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1038/nature11817
This article is cited by
Applied Physics A (2020)
Nature Communications (2017)
Scientific Reports (2017)
Scientific Reports (2017)