Memory and Storage

Inventor Seeks to Cash-in Memristor Patents

09 October 2013

Blaise Mouttet has signed up Atlanta-based Adapt IP Ventures to sell or license his portfolio of patents relating primarily to the use of crossbar technology within memristive systems.

Whereas the X-shaped crossbar has largely been used to define locations for—and access to—data storage, Mouttet's patents address techniques used to make programmable crossbar arrays for signal processing, according to Adapt IP Ventures.

Mouttet has a portfolio of 17 issued patents covering techniques for such things as a programmable crossbar signal processor, a crossbar control circuit and a memristor crossbar neural interface.

Mouttet's IP replaces traditional logic implementations of highly parallel systems with a nonvolatile crossbar array. This affords faster processing and adaptability for such functions as waveform generation signal filtering, broadband communication and pattern recognition, it is claimed.

The use of programmable memory arrays, such as PROMs, for efficient logic implementations in Programmable Array Logic (PALs) is well-known prior art. PALs were high volume ICs in the 1980s but fell in to disuse in the 1990s.

The term memristor has been applied to two-terminal devices with a variable but non-linear resistance. A behavioral definition of the memristor was proposed by an academic, Leon Chua, in 1971, but in more recent times the term has been used to describe a variable resistance memory. This is despite the fact that there are thought to be numerous physical means of implementing a resistive RAM or ReRAM device.

"The memory resistive technology of my patents offers new capability in pattern recognition and real-time adaptive control by overcoming the Von Neumann Bottleneck resultant from segregating memory and processor circuitry," said Mouttet, in a statement issued by Adapt IP Ventures.

A number of companies are investigating ReRAMs based on a variety of material systems and some have also declared an interest in the use of the technology for neuromorphic and neural network style computer architectures.

"After several years in university and corporate laboratories, memristor technology now appears poised for commercialization by major industry players," said Brian Bochicco, vice president at Adept IP Ventures. "Accordingly, the acquisition or licensing of the Mouttet patent portfolio will yield an immediate and defensible competitive advantage to the ultimate buyer or licensee."

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