Monday, April 28, 2008

US Patent 7362605 - Nanoelectromechanical memory cell

Nantero and a few other companies have explored using nanostructures in mechanical memory cells. Typically these systems use the nanostructure to operate as a mechanical switch but this patent from Ambient Systems examines using nanomechanical structures such as carbon nanotubes to facilitate charge storage as performed in more conventional electronic memory designs. Claim 1 reads:

1. A system comprising:

a base;

a nanometer-scale beam coupled to said base having a first portion that is free-to-move; and

a first charge containment layer coupled to said base in the proximity of said first free-moving portion, wherein said charge containment layer is operable to receive, and store, a first charge profile without moving said nanometer-scale beam and said nanometer-scale beam is not operable to physically touch said first charge containment layer.