Samsung mass produces 6th generation V-NAND SSDs

Samsung Electronics is widening the technology gap with its rivals as the world’s largest memory chipmaker has begun mass production of solid-state drives (SSDs) for enterprise PCs utilizing its latest V-NAND technology.

The chipmaker said its 256-gigabit three-bit V-NAND flash chips are used to make 250-gigabyte SSDs and it has been supplying the SSDs to global PC makers.

V-NAND stands for vertical NAND as the cell arrays are stacked vertically. Samsung is the only memory chipmaker that succeeded in mass-producing SSDs based on sixth-generation V-NAND.

The announcement shows Samsung’s strong drive to cement its leadership amid a gloomy business outlook. The chipmaker has been struggling with falling memory chip prices and Japan’s unprecedented trade curbs on key high tech materials bound for Korea.

“Samsung’s sixth-generation V-NAND features the industry’s fastest data transfer rate, capitalizing on the company’s distinct manufacturing edge that is taking 3D memory to new heights,” the company said.

Utilizing its channel hole etching technology, the new V-NAND adds 40 percent more cells compared to the fifth-generation V-NAND.

Higher stacks tend to become more vulnerable to errors and read latencies, but Samsung overcame such limitations by applying a speed-optimized circuit design.

“Compared to the previous generation, this represents a more than 10-percent improvement in performance, while power consumption is reduced by more than 15 percent,” the company added.

Samsung said the mass production of the 250-gigabyte SSDs would be followed by new products as well.

“By bringing cutting-edge 3D memory technology to volume production, we are able to introduce timely memory lineups that significantly raise the bar for speed and power efficiency,” said Kyung Kye-hyun, executive vice president of solution product and development at Samsung.

“With faster development cycles for next-generation V-NAND products, we plan to rapidly expand the markets for our high-speed, high-capacity 512-gigabit V-NAND-based solutions.”

Samsung added it plans to deploy the new V-NAND flash memory chips for mobile devices, enterprise servers and applications for automotive market to retain its technological leadership. To better meet demand from its customer companies, it plans to expand production of the sixth-generation V-NAND products at its Pyeongtaek plant in Gyeonggi Province.

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