Forecasting with Smith Charts

Example Smith ChartForecasting the memory market can be quite daunting unless you use the appropriate tools, then it becomes enormously simple.  Many of my clients ask The Memory Guy how it is that I am able to come up with such consistently-acurate forecasts in a seemingly-unpredictable market.  My answer is always that I use the Smith Chart.  This chart is a nomogram, presented in an angular/logarithmic format (as opposed to Continue reading “Forecasting with Smith Charts”

Samsung Admits to Needing EUV for Sub-20nm Nodes

Pretty graphic to draw you in to the blog postAbout a year ago a rumor was circulating that Samsung was unable to yield its sub-20nm products without using EUV for the finer processes.  Since The Memory Guy doesn’t traffic in rumors I did not publish anything about this rumor at the time.

On March 25 the company verified the rumor, though, by issuing a statement that: “Samsung is the first to adopt EUV in DRAM production.”  I found it interesting that the company turned something that  was Continue reading “Samsung Admits to Needing EUV for Sub-20nm Nodes”

COVID-19’s Impact on the Semiconductor Market

DRAM Gigabyte Shipments HistoryToday is March 16, 2020, and the US stock market is still trying to understand what is happening with the global Coronavirus Pandemic, having lost nearly 20% of its value over the past week.  Cooling-off periods (also called “Circuit Breakers”) automatically stopped overheated trading three times today, and numerous other times last week.

Market indexes fell sharply, as is evident in the following chart from Google Finance which shows Continue reading “COVID-19’s Impact on the Semiconductor Market”

NVM Selectors: A Unified Explanation of Threshold Switching

Photo of Ron Neale, Renowned Phase-Change Memory ExpertContributor Ron Neale joins us again to review a paper delivered at last December’s IEDM conference by John Moores & Cambridge Universities, IMEC, and the University of Wuhan.  While the main focus of the paper is on PCM endurance improvements, it also provides some new inputs, which, with some suggested additions of Neale’s own, might now provide a unified explanation of threshold switching in the chalcogenides.  Neale includes discussions of these new ideas with one of the paper’s authors.


One of the most interesting papers at the recent IEDM was presented by a team at: John Moores University Liverpool, and Cambridge University, UK, IMEC, Belgium and the University of Wuhan, China.  As its title makes clear, this research has an important target of Continue reading “NVM Selectors: A Unified Explanation of Threshold Switching”

SPIE Advanced Litho Conference: Artificial Intelligence and a Lot of Chemistry

I attended a bit of the SPIE Advanced Lithography conference in San Jose this  week.  This  show is different from my normal fare, since The Memory Guy isn’t all that smart with process technology.  Still, there were certain aspects that I wanted to see.  Surprisingly, none of the presentations that I attended related directly to lithography: Two were about Continue reading “SPIE Advanced Litho Conference: Artificial Intelligence and a Lot of Chemistry”

Chalcogenide Selectors and Oxide Memory Move Towards 1Gbit

Photo of Ron Neale, Renowned Phase-Change Memory ExpertIn this post contributor Ron Neale looks deeper into a paper delivered by CEA-Leti at December’s 2019 IEDM conference, evaluating its fundamental thesis that an OTS selector is suitable for high-density memory arrays.  Another interesting aspect of this same paper was the subject of an earlier post.


One eye catcher at IEDM 2019 was a paper from a team in France at CEA-Leti, Minatec, Grenoble, IMEP LAHC CNRS and INL CNRS, INSA Lyon, by D. Alfaro Robayo et al titled: Reliability and Variability of 1S1R OxRAM-OTS for High Density Crossbar Integration.  I discussed another aspect of Continue reading “Chalcogenide Selectors and Oxide Memory Move Towards 1Gbit”

UPMEM Releases Processor-In-Memory Benchmark Results

Chip layout of Micron's Automata ProcessorOn January 22 Processor-In-Memory (PIM) maker UPMEM announced what the company claims are: “The first silicon-based PIM benchmarks.”  These benchmarks indicate that a Xeon server that has been equipped with UPMEM’s PIM DIMM can perform eleven times as many five-word string searches through 128GB of DRAM in a given amount of time as the Xeon processor can perform on its own.  The company tells us that this provides significant energy savings: the server consumes only one sixth the energy of a standard system.  By using algorithms that have been optimized for parallel processing UPMEM claims to be able to process these searches up to 35 times as quickly as a conventional system.

Furthermore, the same system with an UPMEM PIM is said to Continue reading “UPMEM Releases Processor-In-Memory Benchmark Results”

University of Lancaster Invents Yet Another Memory

The Memory Guy recently encountered some stories in the press about “UltraRAM” which is the name for a new type of NVRAM developed by researchers at Lancaster University in the UK.  These researchers published one paper last June in Nature:  Room-temperature Operation of Low-voltage, Non-volatile, Compound-semiconductor Memory Cells, and another just this month in the IEEE’s Transactions on Electron Devices: Simulations of Ultralow-Power Nonvolatile Cells for Random-Access Memory.

According to the papers, the new Continue reading “University of Lancaster Invents Yet Another Memory”

Observations on the “Universal Law” for NV Memory Cells

Photo of Ron Neale, Renowned Phase-Change Memory ExpertRon Neale returns to The Memory Guy blog to discuss a “Universal Law” about memory elements and selectors that was presented by CEA Leti at the IEEE’s 2019 IEDM conference last December.


At IEDM 2019 D. Alfaro Robayo et al presented a paper titled: Reliability and Variability of 1S1R OxRAM-OTS for High Density Crossbar Integration that had a rather interesting claim of a “Universal Law”.  It is possible that some links to the past might help to provide an explanation for Continue reading “Observations on the “Universal Law” for NV Memory Cells”

Micron Debuts 16Gb 1Znm DDR5 DRAM Chip

Micron 1Znm LP-DDR4 DRAMAt CES last week Micron Technology introduced a new DRAM.  The company’s second 1Znm production part, this 16Gb chip is an early supporter of the new DDR5 interface, opening the door to higher speeds and lower power consumption.

The company’s first 1Znm DRAM is the LPDDR4 part pictured on the left, which started Continue reading “Micron Debuts 16Gb 1Znm DDR5 DRAM Chip”