Since 2014 Samsung Electronics already lets out DDR4 RDIMM with an amount of 64 GB based on technology 3D TSV. These modules are also intended for corporate servers and cloudy applicaions. RDIMM modules turn on 36 DDR4 DRAM chips, each of which consists of four 4-gigabit crystals of DDR4 DRAM. Chips are made with use of technology process of a class of 20 nanometers.
What is 3D TSV and what should be known about it and how it changes our life?
In comparison with the memory modules made on traditional technology 3D TSV DDR4 RDIMM with an amount of 64 GB showed increase of performance twice and double decrease in energy consumption, Solid State Technology reports. Already then the company declared an opportunity to connect among themselves more than four crystals of DDR4, using technology 3D TSV that will allow to create DRAM modules with higher density.
The 128-gigabyte module of memory of DDR4 with use of technology of end-to-end vertical connection of crystals (TSV) and two-row pin configuration (RDIMM) consists of 144 DDR4 chips united in 36 blocks on 4 GB, in each of which there are four 8-gigabyte chips of a class of 20 nanometers.
Besides, the main chip of each packet of 4 GB executes function of the buffer of data that allows to optimize performance and energy consumption. The technology of packaging of TSV chips allows to connect vertically DDR4 crystals having thickness in several tens microns by means of electrodes through several hundred openings.
What is TSV
About industrial mastering of the TSV technology (Through Silicon Via – transitional openings in silicon) allowing to pass from a planar arrangement of elements in (in one plane) to volume (elements are located one above another), the IBM company declared in 2007.
TSV technology essence – forming of transitional openings in silicon chips. These transitional openings are filled with polysilicon or metal (copper, gold or tungsten), the vertical conductors connecting crystals in a stack are as a result formed.
The power amplifier for wireless telecommunication systems was the first product of IBM in which the TSV technology was used. According to the statement of the company, application of TSV for 40% increased power efficiency of the amplifier.
Approximately then began to develop chips using the TSV technology the NEC Electronics, Elpida Memory and Oki Electric companies. At the same time the TSV technology then was recognized difficult (transitional openings occupied the additional space of a crystal therefore it was necessary to make changes to its topology) and expensive.
The American company Vertical Circuits along with IBM patented other technology thanks to which it was possible to increase performance and to reduce power consumption of chips – Vertical Interconnect Pillar (vertical interconnecting columns). On a ready semiconductor plate with crystals of chips the additional metalization layer which brought signal connect pads to one of edges of the chip formed. Then all plate became covered with polymer in which windows over signal connect pads were opened. Further there was separation of a plate into crystals. Separate crystals connected vertically, forming a stack. But further the patent business did not go.
Superiority in mass use of the TSV technology belongs not to Samsung. The industry-first TSV DRAM chip integrating eight chips of DDR3 SDRAM in one body was developed by the Japanese company Elpida Memory 2009. In 2011 the company declared the beginning of deliveries of the DDR3 SDRAM chips which are also using technology of mounting of TSV. Deliverable samples represented 8-Gbit DDR3 SDRAM chip which integrate four 2-Gbit crystals of DDR3 SDRAM and the interface block in one body.
However despite prospects of technology, 3D TSV it was until recently widely applied only to connection with optical sensors in digital by photo/video to equipment.
Today the module of 128 GB TSV DDR4 RDIMM is the most energy-efficient solution for servers. According to Samsung, data transmission rate makes 2400 Mbps that allows to increase performance almost twice, having reduced energy consumption by 50% in comparison by modules of 64 GB LRDIMM. Significant increase in performance is connected with the fact that in LRDIMM stacks consist of four packets and are limited on the power and data transmission rate because of traditional hardwired connection.
Samsung will provide a line of new high-performance TSV DRAM modules within several next weeks.
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