A systematic approach has been used to optimise the fabrication process of pentacene-based nonvolatile organic thin film memory transistors (OTFMTs) operating at low programming voltages. In the first part of this work, reliable, reproducible and hysteresis free organic metal-insulator-semiconductor (OMIS) devices and organic thin film transistors (OTFTs) were fabricated and characterised. All devices were based on poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) and poly(vinyl phenol) (PVP) as the organic insulators. The second part of this work focused on optimising the evaporation parameters to fabricate high-performance pentacene-based devices. About 50 nm thickness of pentacene film with a deposition rate of 0.03 nm s-1 on ~ 300 nm of PMMA was found to produce large, uniform and condense grains leading to high quality devices. OTFTs with high mobility of 1.32 cm2 V−1 s−1, on/off current ratio of 106, and negligible hysteresis and leakage current were demonstrated. The effect of the environment on the OTFTs obehaviour was also investigated. The bias stress effect was also investigated in terms of threshold voltage shift ΔVT at various conditions and times. The results show ΔVT increases with the increase of stress voltage. A negligible hysteresis is evident between the forward and reverse direction of the transfer characteristics and the shape of the transfer characteristics does not change with the bias stress.
Floating gate memory structures with thin layer of gold, gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) and single walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) were fabricated and characterised during this investigation. Hysteresis in memory structures was a clear indication of the memory effect and charge storage in these devices. Also, the hysteresis was centred close to 0 V for SWCNTs-based structures, which indicate that a low operation voltage is needed to charge the devices. A memory window of about 40 V was observed for AuNPs-based memory devices based on PVP; while the memory windows for devices based on PMMA with thin layer of Au and AuNPs floating gates were 22 V and 32 V, respectively.
The electrical properties of the OTFMTs were improved by the use of the Au nanoparticles as the floating gate compared with that of an Au thin film. Using appropriate negative or positive voltages, the floating gate was charged and discharged, resulting in a clear shift in the threshold voltage of the memory transistors. Negative and positive pulses of 1 V resulted in clear write and erase states, respectively. Additionally, these organic memory transistors exhibited rather high carrier mobility of about µ = 0.319 cm2 V-1 s-1. Furthermore the data retention and endurance measurements confirmed the non-volatile memory properties of the memory devices fabricated in this study.