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posted by martyb on Monday January 10, @11:02PM   Printer-friendly
from the computers-without-Alzheimers-department dept.

Mass production of revolutionary computer memory moves closer with ULTRARAM™ on silicon wafers for the first time

ULTRARAM™ is a novel type of memory with extraordinary properties. It combines the non-volatility of a data storage memory, like flash, with the speed, energy-efficiency and endurance of a working memory, like DRAM. To do this it utilises the unique properties of compound semiconductors, commonly used in photonic devices such as LEDS, laser diodes and infrared detectors, but not in digital electronics, which is the preserve of silicon.

[...] Now, in a collaboration between the Physics and Engineering Departments at Lancaster University and the Department of Physics at Warwick, ULTRARAM™ has been implemented on silicon wafers for the very first time.

Professor Manus Hayne of the Department of Physics at Lancaster, who leads the work said, "ULTRARAM™ on silicon is a huge advance for our research, overcoming very significant materials challenges of large crystalline lattice mismatch, the change from elemental to compound semiconductor and differences in thermal contraction."

[...] Remarkably, the ULTRARAM™ on silicon devices actually outperform previous incarnations of the technology on GaAs compound semiconductor wafers, demonstrating (extrapolated) data storage times of at least 1000 years, fast switching speed (for device size) and program-erase cycling endurance of at least 10 million, which is one hundred to one thousand times better than flash.

So... are we approaching the point where we get a plug-in RAM storage module that can be used like nonvolatile RAM -- because it is nonvolatile? And when you've built complex data structures on it with RAM efficiency, you can unplug it and put it, and of course the data, on a shelf for later use?

Or just plug it into a computer when you need an extra 24 gigabytes of RAM to formally verify a category-theoretical theorem?

How would *you* like to use this?

Journal Reference:
Peter D. Hodgson, Dominic Lane, Peter J. Carrington, et al. ULTRARAM: A Low‐Energy, High‐Endurance, Compound‐Semiconductor Memory on Silicon [open], Advanced Electronic Materials (DOI: 10.1002/aelm.202101103)


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  • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Tuesday January 11, @12:56AM (3 children)

    by RS3 (6367) on Tuesday January 11, @12:56AM (#1211660)

    Merely having the non-volatility of flash is not that interesting.

    Maybe it will have much longer life than FLASH, which "wears out".

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  • (Score: 2) by takyon on Tuesday January 11, @01:31AM (2 children)

    by takyon (881) <{takyon} {at} {soylentnews.org}> on Tuesday January 11, @01:31AM (#1211667) Journal

    You've already got that with DRAM.

    So far I'm seeing a non-volatile DRAM, not the universal memory we crave. Guess I'll have to click the actual science paper.

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    • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Tuesday January 11, @02:09AM

      by RS3 (6367) on Tuesday January 11, @02:09AM (#1211679)

      Guess I'll have to click the actual science paper.

      No, no! You know the rules, never do that! :)

    • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Tuesday January 11, @04:24AM

      by fustakrakich (6150) on Tuesday January 11, @04:24AM (#1211705) Journal

      the universal memory we crave

      1TB L1 cache

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