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Samsung Electronics Begins Volume Production of Industry’s First 6th-Generation V-NAND
Taking 3D memory to New Heights
Samsung Electronics Begins Volume Production of Industry’s First 6th-Generation V-NAND
  • By Kim Eun-jin
  • August 7, 2019, 10:07
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Samsung Electronics has started volume production of the industry's first 256-gigabit (Gb) three-bit V-NAND with more than 100 layers.

Samsung Electronics announced on Aug. 6 that it has begun mass-producing 250-gigabyte (GB) SATA solid state drive (SSD) that integrates the company’s 6th-generation (1xx-layer) 256-gigabit (Gb) three-bit V-NAND. The company has delivered the SSDs to a global PC manufacturer.

The new SSD is based on the industry’s first 6th-generation V-NAND that has more than 100 layers. It has the industry’s fast data transfer rate.

The company says its new V-NAND has taken 3D memory to new heights by breaking through the current cell stacking limitations. The new product adds around 40-percent more cells to the previous 9x-layer single-stack structure. The company achieved this by building an electrically conductive mold stack comprised of 136 layers, then vertically piercing cylindrical holes from top to bottom, creating uniform 3D charge trap flash (CTF) cells. The company calls this method “channel hole etching” technology.

As the mold stack in each cell area increases in height, NAND flash chips tend to become more vulnerable to errors and read latencies. Samsung says it has overcome such limitations by incorporating a speed-optimized circuit design.

The company says this speed-optimized design allows it to offer next-generation V-NAND solutions with over 300 layers, which can be built simply by mounting three of the current stacks, without compromising chip performance or reliability.

Leveraging the high-speed and low-power features, Samsung plans to broaden the reach of its 3D V-NAND into areas like next-generation mobile devices and enterprise servers. It also targets the automotive market where high reliability is extremely critical.

Starting with 250 GB SSDs for enterprises, Samsung Electronics plans to offer 512 Gb three-bit V-NAND SSD and eUFS in the second half of this year. The company also expects to expand production of higher-speed and greater-capacity 6th-generation V-NAND solutions at its Pyeongtaek (Korea) campus starting next year to better meet demand from global customers.

Earlier in July, Samsung Electronics mass-produced the world's first 12-Gb mobile DRAMs which achieved the highest speed and largest capacity ever.

Samsung Electronics is the dominant leader in the memory semiconductor market. It ranked first with a 40.6 percent share in the DRAM market and a 34.1 percent share in the NAND market in the first quarter of this year, market research firm IHS Markit said. Samsung enjoyed a wide gap with SK Hynix (29.8 percent) in the DRAM market and with Toshiba (18.1 percent) in the NAND market.