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Data Storage Hardware

Samsung Begins Mass Production of Industry's First 3D NAND Flash 56

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the stacked-bits dept.
Lucas123 writes "Samsung has announced it is mass producing the industry's first three-dimensional (3D) Vertical NAND (V-NAND) flash memory that breaks through current planar NAND scaling limits, offering gains in both density and non-volatile memory performance. The first iteration of the V-NAND is a 24-layer, 128Gbit chip that will eventually be used in embedded flash and solid-state drive applications, Samsung said. It provides 2 to 10 times higher reliability and twice the write performance of conventional 10nm-class floating gate NAND flash memory. Initial device capacities will range from 128GB to 1TB, 'depending on customer demand.' 'In the future, they could go considerably higher than that,' said Steve Weinger, director of NAND Marketing for Samsung Semiconductor. Samsung's process uses cell structure based on 3D Charge Trap Flash (CTF) technology and vertical interconnect process technology to link the 3D cell array. By applying the latter technologies, Samsung's 3D V-NAND can provide over twice the scaling of current 20nm-class planar NAND flash."
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Samsung Begins Mass Production of Industry's First 3D NAND Flash

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  • It's not 128 GB (gigabytes), it's 128 Gb (gigabits) of capacity.

    "128 gigabit (Gb) density in a single chip..." - Samsung press release [samsung.com]
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      128 gigabits per Chip and 128 gigabytes per device.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      If you lack the reading comprension skills and computer knowledge to correct someone, it makes you look twice as dumb as you think you are making the object of your correction look. Virtually no device is deployed with only one of these chips. Many are deployed in arrays of 8-32 or more. So if you have 8 bits, you have 1 byte. Consquently, if you have 8 chips of 128,000,000,000 bits you have 128,000,000,000 bytes. (Don't get into the pedantic Gibi versus Giga)

      • > (Don't get into the pedantic Gibi versus Giga)
        That's being pernickety, not being pedantic.
        So am I.
         

        • I was going to be pedantic and point out that the word was "persnickety", but then I just found out that "pernickety" was an alternate spelling for the same word. I guess I'm a bad speller after all.
          • I think, but do not know for sure, that 'persnickety' is more common the the United States of America, whereas 'pernickety' is what is spoken in British English. I certainly never heard 'persnickety' until I moved to the United States.

            I could check, but I won't, because I cannot be arsed.

      • by msauve (701917)
        Flash is usually more than 1 bit wide, and there's no need for a minimum of 8. Good luck fitting 8 in a micro-SD card. If they were discussing actual end devices (as opposed to the flash chips, which are also devices), the numbers given are almost arbitrary and therefore meaningless - a device could be built with 1 or more chips.
    • by gl4ss (559668)

      chip size is different from device capacities(multiple chips, in device sizes from x to xx), one is talking about the other.

    • You'd think ComputerWorld would know better...

      It's not 128 GB (gigabytes), it's 128 Gb (gigabits) of capacity.

      "128 gigabit (Gb) density in a single chip..." - Samsung press release [samsung.com]

      No no no. Please read carefully. The ComputerWorld article says that the final device ("once used to create embedded memory and solid-state drives") can have from 128GB to 1TB of storage. However the article states erroneously "Samsung's new V-NAND offers a 128 bit density in a single chip".

    • by Lucas123 (935744)
      No. Actually the press release and the article state that it's gigabits.
  • Slashdot seems very excited about Samsung NAND lately [slashdot.org] but I don't really get it. Is this really anything but an expected incremental improvement? Is there something I'm missing that makes this super-futuristic NAND OF THE FUTURE live up to the hype?

    • by hattig (47930)

      It exists? It means that NAND can live another generation or two longer as a viable technology before the competitors (e.g., RRAM) are ready to step in.

      • by sosume (680416) on Tuesday August 06, 2013 @08:32AM (#44485095) Journal

        US President Barrack Obama has been quoted saying "since this NAND type RAM is such basic knowledge and essential for producing smartphones, Samsung should provide it for free to US companies, starting with Apple since they are already violating their precious design IP."

        • Its only funny because its so true to character.
        • Well then, I would say that smartphones have become such a fundamental human right that US companies like Apple should give away iPhones for free since Apple has violated so many human rights overseas.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I'd say this is up there with perpendicular recording, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perpendicular_recording for hard disks

      As the summary suggests it enables higher densities and improved transfer rates as we bump up against space and power limits based on physical limitations of process engineering. The fact is that 10nm is bumping head long into some fundamental laws of physics and the ability to scale storage to the point where it reaches the densities of spinning platters is still a factor or two away i

    • by dbIII (701233)
      If it's got enough depth it can live up to the hype since the main cost for these things is mm squared area on a wafer. That zone refined silicon is stupidly expensive in terms of energy and thus heating costs.
    • by timeOday (582209)
      An increase in the exponent is pretty exciting to me! For decades we have been hearing about 3d holographic storage with incredible densities, or 3d processors, and it never appears beyond, say, dual layer DVDs. Granted, Intel Haswell also has 3d lithography [pcmag.com], but it is still one layer of transistors, implemented by 2 or 3 layers of material, e.g. each transistor goes across, then up, then over. In contrast Samsung is using 24 cell layers and planning to build up from there. (Probably the heating issues
  • by EzInKy (115248)

    Why haven't we developed bits with ten or more states instead of two? This is something I've always wondered. Wouldn't that increase memory density and reduce the complexities involved with conversions from decimal to binary and back?

    • Re:10D (Score:5, Informative)

      by akh (240886) <slashdot@NosPaM.alephnull.net> on Tuesday August 06, 2013 @09:46AM (#44485643)

      We have, they're called multi-level cells [wikipedia.org]. They improve memory density but at a cost of increased complexity, lower speed, higher susceptibility to noise, higher power consumption, and decreased lifetime. Decimal arithmetic was used on at least one early computer (ENIAC [wikipedia.org]) but binary circuits were found to be much simpler to design and implement. The only modern non-binary digital computer that I'm aware of is the Soviet Setun [wikipedia.org] that used ternary (tri-state) logic.

    • by u38cg (607297)
      Because computer science and practicality.
    • by loufoque (1400831)

      Because it's stupid.

  • by slashmydots (2189826) on Tuesday August 06, 2013 @09:53AM (#44485705)
    "depending on customer demand."
    I demand that they stop price fixing SSDs and RAM just because Windows 8 is selling like crap. Once a 500GB SSD is a reasonable price, I'll pick one up and they'll put Seagate and WD out of business completely. What the hell are they waiting for, sitting back and making ridiculous profits in the short term instead?
    • Yeah, because DRAM producers like Samsung have never been convicted of price fixing before. Oh wait, they have. Multiple times.

      • by Bengie (1121981)
        I remember the last time they got convicted of price fixing, everyone was selling memory at a loss. Competition was so high that they all decided they no longer wanted to sell for a loss, so they all agreed to increase prices at the same time.

        One of the few times I agreed with price fixing. Damn those prices were soooo cheap at the time.
  • This will be a great breakthrough and with 24 times the density / sq. mm. maybe the 1gb/$1 SSD pricing wall will finally fall to around hard drives at around 22gb/$1 but I'm not throwing my hard drives away yet. One thing the article doesn't mention is cost, or anticipated quantity cost and if Samsung be license friendly, i.e., let another FAB produce the chips or will it be Samsung only territory for awhile?

    I wonder if they'll let Apple buy the chips too?

  • I think this is news for Desktop...imagine, tablets with 1TB or higher...smartphones with 1TB or higher...

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