Process Control For Next-Generation Memories


The Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are driving the need for higher speeds and more power-efficient computing. The industry is responding by bringing new memory technologies to the marketplace. Three new types of memory in particular—MRAM (magnetic random access memory), PCRAM (phase change RAM) and ReRAM (resistive RAM)—are emerging as leading candidat... » 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

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Fab tools and materials Applied Materials has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Kokusai Electric for $2.2 billion in cash from investment firm KKR. With the acquisition of Kokusai’s semiconductor equipment unit, Applied expands its customer base and gains a foothold in the batch processing equipment business, where a tool can process wafers in parallel. Applied’s strength is in the ... » read more

New Applications Call For New Memory Types


The semiconductor industry is on the verge of a transformative computing era driven by Big Data, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT). However, achieving the improvements in computing performance and efficiency needed for new AI and IoT applications represent some of the biggest technology challenges the industry has faced. Among the most critical requirements is del... » read more

Memory Options And Tradeoffs


Steven Woo, Rambus fellow and distinguished inventor, talks with Semiconductor Engineering about different memory options, why some are better than others for certain tasks, and what the tradeoffs are between the different memory types and architectures.     Related Articles/Videos Memory Tradeoffs Intensify In AI, Automotive Applications Why choosing memories and archi... » read more

Challenges In Making And Testing STT-MRAM


Several chipmakers are ramping up a next-generation memory type called STT-MRAM, but there are still an assortment of manufacturing and test challenges for current and future devices. STT-MRAM, or spin-transfer torque MRAM, is attractive and gaining steam because it combines the attributes of several conventional memory types in a single device. In the works for years, STT-MRAM features the ... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: April 23


Sorting nuclei CERN and GSI Darmstadt have begun testing the first of two giant magnets that will serve as part of one of the largest and most complex accelerator facilities in the world. CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, recently obtained two magnets from GSI. The two magnets weigh a total of 27 tons. About 60 more magnets will follow over the next five years. These ... » read more

Comparing New Memory Types


After decades of research and development, three new types of memory—magnetic RAM (MRAM), phase change memory (PCRAM) and resistive RAM (ReRAM)—are moving toward commercial adoption, making this an exciting time for the semiconductor and computing industries. All three of these emerging memories are enabled by new materials and will require breakthroughs in process technology and manufactur... » read more

More Memory And Processor Tradeoffs


Creating a new chip architecture is becoming an increasingly complex series of tradeoffs about memories and processing elements, but the benefits are not always obvious when those tradeoffs are being made. This used to be a fairly straightforward exercise when there was one processor, on-chip SRAM and off-chip DRAM. Fast forward to 7/5nm, where chips are being developed for AI, mobile ph... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers How bad is the slowdown in the IC industry? The memory market is terrible, while other markets are slowing. One company—Renesas--is feeling the brunt. Citing the IC slowdown, Renesas will temporarily halt production at 13 of the company's 14 production facilities, according to a report from Nikkei. Renesas confirmed the move. “Renesas is considering implementing measures to ... » read more

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