Intrinsic complexity of the melt-quenched amorphous Ge2Sb 2Te5 memory alloy

M. Krbal, A. V. Kolobov, P. Fons, J. Tominaga, S. R. Elliott, J. Hegedus, T. Uruga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

116 Citations (Scopus)


Through the use of first-principles Ge K-edge XANES simulations we demonstrate that the structure of melt-quenched amorphous Ge-Sb-Te is intrinsically complex and is a mixture of Ge(3):Te(3) and Ge(4):Te(2) configurations in comparable concentrations, in contrast to the as-deposited amorphous phase that is dominated by the Ge(4):Te(2) configurations. The reasons for Ge-Te polyvalency are discussed and it is argued that both configurations are compatible with the Mott 8-N rule and the definition of an ideal amorphous solid. The near-perfect Te-Te distance match between the two major configurations accounts for the high cyclability of phase-change materials. Stable compositions in the Ge-Sb-Te system are suggested.

Original languageEnglish
Article number054203
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Feb 11
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


Dive into the research topics of 'Intrinsic complexity of the melt-quenched amorphous Ge2Sb 2Te5 memory alloy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this