Scientists Develop Plastic Memristors Capable of Mimicking Human Brain

A group of Russian and Italian scientists announced that they were able to create plastic memristors that work as artificial brain synapses.

The Russian and Italian scientists led by Vyacheslav Demin reported that their plastic memristors have the potential to become “low-volatile and high-performance neurochips that could be made for a huge number of intellectual products and applications.”

Scientists from the Kurchatov Institute, Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), the University of Parma (Italy), Moscow State University and Saint Petersburg State University developed their plastic memristors at the Nano-, Bio-, Information and Cognitive Sciences and Technologies (NBIC) Center at the Kurchatov Institute in Moscow.

Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, in a statement, said that the newly developed plastic memristors can potentially be used to build new computers.

Memristor is defined by MIPT as an “electric element similar to a conventional resistor.” The plastic memristors developed by the Russian and Italian scientists were fabricated at one millimeter scale for convenience. The size of the memristor can be reduced up to 10 nanometers, MIPT said.

MIPT described this plastic memristor as having a memory and at the same time, can change data encoded by its resistance state. MIPT said, “In this sense, a memristor is similar to a synapse – a connection between two neurons in the brain ….”

This is not the first time that the plastic material polyaniline was chosen for memristors. Previous studies have shown that plastic polyaniline can be used for memristors.

Plastic polyaniline, according to MIPT, is a better material for a chip compared to the widely used two-dimensional silicon. Polyaniline is a three-dimensional material that can be placed on top of one another in a multi-tiered structure, MIPT said.