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Samsung announces industry's first 512 GB DDR5 module

The new DDR5 modules actually have a 640 GB capacity, but 8 chips are used for ECC. (image Source: Samsung)
The new DDR5 modules actually have a 640 GB capacity, but 8 chips are used for ECC. (image Source: Samsung)
By employing technologies like TSV and HKHG, Samsung is now able to up the DDR5 module capacity to 512 GB. These modules are designed for data centers and are twice as fast as any current DDR4 solutions. Desktop versions with more "down to earth" capacities should also be available towards the end of the year.
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Micron and SK Hynix already announced their DDR5 implementations expected to launch this year from integrators like ADATA, Team Group or Kingston and now Samsung is stepping in with the announcement of its own take on the DDR5 standard. As the leading advanced memory technology maker, Samsung is upping the ante with industry’s first 512 GB DDR5 RAM modules designed for bandwidth-intensive computing applications. This large capacity is possible through the use of technologies like TSV (through-silicon via) and HKMG (High-K Metal Gate).

Samsung does not mention the exact frequencies for the new 512 GB DDR5 modules, but specifies that these can deliver twice the performance of current DDR4 modules, peaking at 7200 Mbps speeds, which should greatly improve data transfers for high-bandwidth workloads in supercomputing, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), as well as data analytics applications.

The HKMG process was first implemented in Samsung’s GDDR6 memory in 2018. This type of technology is usually used for processor dies that scale down faster than any other component (already at 5 nm now, while RAM is on 10 nm). DDR5 allows for increased scaling capabilities, but traditional insulation layers have become too thin, leading to a higher leakage current. By replacing the insulator with HKMG material, Samsung’s DDR5 will be able to reduce the leakage and reach new heights in performance. Additionally, the HKMG material will reduce RAM module energy requirements by 13%.

With the latest TSV iteration, Samsung is now able to stack eight layers of 16 Gb per DRAM chip. Each of the DRAM chips thus comes with a 16 GB capacity, so the total 512 GB capacity would require 32 chips. However, the images supplied by Samsung show that each module actually integrates 40 chips for a total of 640 GB. 8 of these DRAM chips are used for ECC (error correction code) since the modules are primarily designed for data centers.

 

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Bogdan Solca
Bogdan Solca - Senior Tech Writer - 1535 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2017
I first stepped into the wondrous IT&C world when I was around seven years old. I was instantly fascinated by computerized graphics, whether they were from games or 3D applications like 3D Max. I'm also an avid reader of science fiction, an astrophysics aficionado, and a crypto geek. I started writing PC-related articles for Softpedia and a few blogs back in 2006. I joined the Notebookcheck team in the summer of 2017 and am currently a senior tech writer mostly covering processor, GPU, and laptop news.
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Bogdan Solca, 2021-03-25 (Update: 2021-03-25)