SK hynix develops world’s first 238-layer NAND flash memory
SK hynix has succeeded in developing the world’s first 238-layer NAND flash memory, a type of non-volatile storage technology that does not require power to retain data.
SK hynix unveiled its 238-layer 512 gigabyte TLC 4D NAND flash product for the first time at the Flash Memory Summit 2022 in Santa Clara, California on Wednesday.
A 200-layer or higher NAND flash is often referred to as “dream technology.” The 238-layer NAND flash developed by SK hynix has the most layers among existing memory semiconductors. Micron Technology, an American company, announced on July 27 that it would start mass production of 232-layer NAND flash memory. With the development of the 238-layer NAND flash by SK Hynix, the “K-semiconductor” industry has widened the technology gap.
“We succeeded in developing next-generation technology again since developing the 176-layer NAND in December 2020,” said a spokesperson from SK hynix. “This 238-layer NAND flash is the most advanced among existing products, and it is also meaningful because we have succeeded in making it smaller."
As the memory size became smaller, the production efficiency also increased. The spokesperson from SK hynix explained that the productivity has increased by 34 percent compared to the previous generation 176-layer memory. Although small in size, the data transfer speed is faster and power consumption is reduced. The data transmission speed of the 238-layer NAND flash is 2.4 gigabytes per second, which is 50 percent faster than the 176-layer memory, and the energy consumption of the chip when reading data has been reduced by 21 percent, according to SK hynix.
SK hynix plans to start mass production of the 238-layer NAND flash memory in the first half of next year, after releasing product samples to customers. The company plans to supply the memory first for cSSD, a PC storage device, then expand the range of product use to include high-capacity SSDs for smartphones and servers. In addition, a 1 terabyte product with doubled storage capacity will be released next year.
“We have secured global top-class competitiveness in terms of cost, performance, and quality through the development of 238-layer NAND flash memory,” said an official of SK hynix in a keynote speech at the summit on Wednesday. “We will continue to innovate to break through technological limits.”
BY KO SUK-HYUN [firstname.lastname@example.org]