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Samsung has a 512GB DDR5 module it claims is twice as fast as a DDR4 module

You might know Samsung as the maker of smartphones and TVs but the company has a finger in a multitude of pies from construction to life insurance.

Samsung is also the largest memory chipmaker in the world but it isn’t resting on those laurels.

The firm has today announced the expansion of its memory portfolio with the introduction of a 512GB DDR5 module. While a new stick of RAM isn’t exciting in and of itself, the way this module was developed is.

We say that because this memory module is based on a High-K Metal Gate (HKMG) process. This process is often found in logic chips where the insulation is too thin to use silicon dioxide so a material with a higher relative permittivity is used in its place. Using an HKMG material means that leakage is reduced and you can benefit from a performance bump.

To reach 512GB of capacity on a single module, Samsung made use of through-silicon via (TSV) technology which it has been using since 2014.

So what does all this fancy lingo mean?

These modules can reach maximum speeds of 7 200Mbps, leakage is reduced and power consumption is reduced by 13 percent.

That power consumption reduction is important, because these modules are not destined for your home PC, at least not yet.

“By bringing this type of process innovation to DRAM manufacturing, we are able to offer our customers high-performance, yet energy-efficient memory solutions to power the computers needed for medical research, financial markets, autonomous driving, smart cities and beyond,” said vice president of the DRAM memory planning/enabling group at Samsung Electronics, Young-Soo Sohn.

Samsung says that these modules are being sampled by customers for verification and certification with products for artificial intelligence, exascale computing, analytics, networking and other data intensive workloads.

One of those customers is Intel.

“As the amount of data to be moved, stored and processed increases exponentially, the transition to DDR5 comes at a critical inflection point for cloud datacenters, networks and edge deployments,” said vice president and general manager of memory and IO technology at Intel, Carolyn Duran.

“Intel’s engineering teams closely partner with memory leaders like Samsung to deliver fast, power-efficient DDR5 memory that is performance-optimized and compatible with our upcoming Intel Xeon Scalable processors, code-named Sapphire Rapids.”

As for when DDR4 will be replaced by DDR5, Samsung says via Bloomberg that will happen in the second half of 2023.

Hopefully the global semi-conductor shortage is over by then.

[Source – Samsung]

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