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Neuromorphic circuits and AI: the ionic transistor as a bio-inspired synaptic element. Comprehensive study using a multi-axis approach: design, fabrication, characterization and physical modeling

Technological challenge: New computing paradigms, circuits and technologies, incl. quantum (learn more)

Department: Département Composants Silicium (LETI)

Laboratory: Laboratoire des Composants pour la RF et l'Energie

Start Date: 01-10-2022

Location: Grenoble

CEA Code: SL-DRT-22-0728

Contact: sami.oukassi@cea.fr

Functional emulation of biological synapses using electronic devices is considered the first step towards neuromorphic engineering and artificial neural networks (ANN). Ionic transistors are mixed ionic-electronic conductivity devices capable of capacitive and/or faradic gate-to-channel coupling, enabling non-volatile, multi-level output. Ion coupling offers significant advantages for the realization of neuromorphic devices/architectures, including a very low power consumption operation (fJ/synaptic operation, one to two decades lower than existing solutions). The objective is to evaluate the synaptic behavior of ionic transistors. To do so, components embedding a selection of materials (transition metal dichalcogenides and oxides, solid state ionic conductors) and architectures will be implemented. The synaptic behavior will be evaluated in terms of linearity, symmetry, endurance, retention and energy consumption. A modeling phase will investigate the correlations between physico-chemical mechanisms (ionic conduction, intercalation, accumulation of charges at the interfaces) and electrical performances, and will allow to propose optimized components and associated integration modes. Simulations will be performed with neuromorphic computation algorithms and using experimental data of the realized components to compare with state-of-the-art solutions.

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