New publication in ACS Nano

Date of news: 5 February 2024

Stochastic Syncing in Sinusoidally Driven Atomic Orbital Memory


Stochastically fluctuating multiwell systems are a promising route toward physical implementations of energy-based machine learning and neuromorphic hardware. One of the challenges is finding tunable material platforms that exhibit such multiwell behavior and understanding how complex dynamic input signals influence their stochastic response. One such platform is the recently discovered atomic Boltzmann machine, where each stochastic unit is represented by a binary orbital memory state of an individual atom. Here, we investigate the stochastic response of binary orbital memory states to sinusoidal input voltages. Using scanning tunneling microscopy, we investigated orbital memory derived from individual Fe and Co atoms on black phosphorus. We quantify the state residence times as a function of various input parameters such as frequency, amplitude, and offset voltage. The state residence times for both species, when driven by a sinusoidal signal, exhibit synchronization that can be quantitatively modeled by a Poisson process based on the switching rates in the absence of a sinusoidal signal. For individual Fe atoms, we also observe a frequency-dependent response of the state favorability, which can be tuned by the input parameters. In contrast to Fe, there is no significant frequency dependence in the state favorability for individual Co atoms. Based on the Poisson model, the difference in the response of the state favorability can be traced to the difference in the voltage-dependent switching rates of the two different species. This platform provides a tunable way to induce population changes in stochastic systems and provides a foundation toward understanding driven stochastic multiwell systems.