This article presents three photothermal methods dedicated to the measurement of the thermal properties of chalcogenide alloys, used as a central element in the new generations of non-volatile memory. These materials have two phases, amorphous and crystalline, possessing a sharp contrast in their electrical and thermal properties. In the crystalline phase, the properties also change very significantly with temperature. The control of the temperature of the samples, the choice of transducers, and the time or frequency characteristic values of the photothermal excitation are thoroughly discussed. Each photothermal technique is described from the experimental point of view as well as from the inverse method, performed to identify the parameters of interest. The identified thermal properties mainly concern the thermal conductivity and the thermal resistance at the interfaces between the phase-change materials and the materials in contact as encountered in the production of the microelectronic memory device. Assessing various photothermal techniques, the study suggests that pulsed photothermal radiometry is the most effective method for sensitive high-temperature measurements of thermal properties of the phase-change materials.

You do not currently have access to this content.