The Next New Memories


Several next-generation memory types are ramping up after years of R&D, but there are still more new memories in the research pipeline. Today, several next-generation memories, such as MRAM, phase-change memory (PCM) and ReRAM, are shipping to one degree or another. Some of the next new memories are extensions of these technologies. Others are based on entirely new technologies or involve ar... » read more

HBM2E: The E Stands for Evolutionary


Samsung introduced the first memory products in March that conform to JEDEC’s HBM2E specification, but so far nothing has come to market—a reflection of just how difficult it is to manufacture this memory in volume. Samsung’s new HBM2E (sold under the Flashbolt brand name, versus the older Aquabolt and Flarebolt brands), offers 33% better performance over HBM2 thanks to doubling the de... » read more

Do Superconducting Processors Really Need Cryogenic Memories? The Case For Cold DRAM


Cryogenic, superconducting digital processors offer the promise of greatly reduced operating power for server-class computing systems. This is due to the exceptionally low energy per operation of Single Flux Quantum circuits built from Josephson junction devices operating at the temperature of 4 Kelvin. Unfortunately, no suitable same-temperature memory technology yet exists to complement thes... » read more

AI Inference Memory System Tradeoffs


When companies describe their AI inference chip they typically give TOPS but don’t talk about their memory system, which is equally important. What is TOPS? It means Trillions or Tera Operations per Second. It is primarily a measure of the maximum achievable throughput but not a measure of actual throughput. Most operations are MACs (multiply/accumulates), so TOPS = (number of MAC units) x... » read more

DRAM Tradeoffs: Speed Vs. Energy


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to talk about new DRAM options and considerations with Frank Ferro, senior director of product management at Rambus; Marc Greenberg, group director for product marketing at Cadence; Graham Allen, senior product marketing manager for DDR PHYs at Synopsys; and Tien Shiah, senior manager for memory marketing at Samsung Electronics. What follows are excerpts of th... » read more

Cloudy Outlook Seen For IC Biz


After a slowdown in the first half of 2019, chipmakers and equipment vendors face a cloudy outlook for the second half of this year, with a possible recovery in 2020. Generally, the semiconductor industry began to see a slowdown starting in mid- to late-2018, which extended into the first half of 2019. During the first half of this year, memory and non-memory vendors were negatively impacted... » read more

Using Memory Differently To Boost Speed


Boosting memory performance to handle a rising flood of data is driving chipmakers to explore new memory types and different ways of using existing memory, but it also is creating some complex new challenges. For most of the semiconductor design industry, memory has been a non-issue for the past couple of decades. The main concerns were price and size, but memory makers have been more than a... » read more

China’s Latest Goal—More DRAMs


China is once again making a concerted effort to get its domestic DRAM industry off the ground. Past efforts have fallen short or failed. This time around, it’s unclear if China will succeed, but the industry should pay close attention here. So why would China want to play a bigger role in the tough and competitive DRAM business? For one thing, the U.S. and China are in the midst of a t... » read more

Will In-Memory Processing Work?


The cost associated with moving data in and out of memory is becoming prohibitive, both in terms of performance and power, and it is being made worse by the data locality in algorithms, which limits the effectiveness of cache. The result is the first serious assault on the von Neumann architecture, which for a computer was simple, scalable and modular. It separated the notion of a computatio... » read more

Inferencing Efficiency


Geoff Tate, CEO of Flex Logix, talks with Semiconductor Engineering about how to measure efficiency in inferencing chips, how to achieve the most throughput for the lowest cost, and what the benchmarks really show. » read more

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