The company Mikron announced the start of the supply of 232 layered flash chips of 3D NAND TLC, which has the highest market density, with a single crystal of up to 1 Tbit. In addition to the significantly increased density, the new 232 layer flash chips of 3D NAND TLC offer up to two times higher recording speed and up to 75% higher reading speed than the previous generation's chips.
As shown in the picture below, the increased density allowed Mikron to reduce the packaging volume of the 232 layered flash memory chip 3D NAND TLC by 28% compared to the previous generation ' s chips. This may be useful for the production of, for example, the same smartphones and microSD memory cards.
In a package of 11.5 x 13.5 mm, you can combine up to 16 232 layered flash drive crystals of 3D NAND TLC, thus getting a 2-tbyte chip that is three times smaller than the American postage stamp. With the 1 mm2 compact, you can record up to 14.6 Gbits, which is 30 to 100 percent more than the competitive products available to the market. According to Mikron, you can save 340,000 hours of 4K video in one such chip.
As in the past, Mikron uses its CMOS under array technology in new flash memory chips, but now for the sixth generation, to increase density by placing CMOS under a cell array. The company also uses a double glass flash memory design. This means that each finished crystal consists of two 116 layered crystals connected by a process called a sequenced setup. The manufacturer also refers to the use of new materials and processes to create openings in a high density crystal, which also affected the overall density of the chip.
The impressive performance of the new micron memory flash chips is provided by a new six-plan architecture, which is first applied to the memory of 3D NAND TLC. The plane is the area of the flash memory crystal, which independently responds to input-output requests, just as each CPU core can perform operations in parallel. The larger the number of planes, the greater the productivity.
In the previous generation, Microsoft's flash memory used a four-pity architecture. The change to a six-plane system allowed for a 50 per cent increase in the rate of transmission of data to ONFI 5.0, thus generally increasing the capacity of the memory crystal. According to Mikron, at the level of packaging the flash memory chip, this resulted in a double increase in the productivity of recording operations and a 75 per cent increase in the reading speed compared to the previous generation, in which 176 layer chips were represented. However, this is only in theory. In practice, it is much more difficult. This does not mean that the market will soon have solid storage devices, twice as fast as the current ones. The problem is that other factors, such as memory controller and interface, also affect the productivity of the SSD. However, the progress of Microsoft may encourage other manufacturers to push up and develop components that can be held back by the new flash memory of the American company.
According to Mikron, adding extra planes also has a positive effect on the quality of data transmission and delays in recording and reading operations, but the manufacturer has not yet published more favourable data on this account. The logic of new 232 layered flash chips of Microsoft 3D NAND TLC supports the new interface NV-LPPDR4 with lower energy consumption, the energy cost per bit reduced to 30% compared to the previous generation. In other words, the new chips have higher energy efficiency, but again the company does not share any specific details and examples.
The reliability of the new Micron memory flash chips is not reported either. However, it can be expected that the new 232 layered chips for this indicator will match those of the previous generation's flash drive chips. Recall that the reliability is calculated in the programs/Erase cycles. However, the 232 layered TLC memory chips can be expected to have approximately the same level of reliability.
The company notes that it has already started supplying new 232 layered flash drive chips to 3D NAND TLC OEM manufacturers, as well as new hard storage devices based on them . Mikron has only recently started producing new chips and will increase their production during the remainder of 2022.