Feeds

Hitachi GST SVP takes a punt on STT-RAM

Joins Grandis

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

The general manager and VP of Engineering at Hitachi GST has left to join a NAND and DRAM replacement technology company, Grandis. That seems like a risky move.

Said GM and VP Mohamad Krounbi is joining Grandis to be its SVP for engineering, taking on responsibility for "all STT-RAM technology and product development at Grandis and for ensuring that the company's licensees incorporate the best technology and processes as they bring their STT-RAM products to market."

What is STT-RAM? It is Spin Transfer Torque Random Access Memory (or magneto-resistive random access memory - MRAM) and is positioned as a technology that can move down to smaller process sizes than NAND, and combine its non-volatility with the speed of DRAM. The idea is to have a spin-polarised current in a tunnel magneto resistance element. Normally an electric current is not polarised as half its electrons are classed as spin-up and half as spin-down. This can be changed by passing a current through a thick magnetic layer such that it has more spin-up electrons than spin-down or vice-versa.

The next step is to have this spin-polarised current transfer its spin characteristic to a magnetic element from which the direction of magnetism signifies a binary one or zero.

Hynix was making approving noises about STT-RAM, as a NAND flash successor, in 2008. It signed an STT-RAM license agreement with Grandis in April of that year.

At that time Sung Wook Park, Head of the R&D Division at Hynix, said: “Grandis is leading in STT-RAM technology and has a broad portfolio of fundamental patents in this area. Through this partnership with Grandis, we look forward to integrating leading-edge STT-RAM technology into our semiconductor manufacturing processes and to a new era in memory capability at advanced technology nodes.”

Researchers at Hitachi and Tohoyu University demonstrated a 32Mbit STT-RAM device, which they called an SPRAM device, in 2009. The two have developed a 2-bit multi-level cell version of the technology. Hitachi has a roadmap to develop a 1Gbit chip by 2015.

Renesas of Japan, a company formed by Hitachi and Mitsubishi spinning off their chip businesses, is developing STT-RAM product, apparently using licensed technology from Grandis.

Fujitsu also has an internal STT-RAM development effort.

We could position STT-RAM as a candidate, along with Phase-Change Memory and HP's Memristor, for the NAND follow-on technology. The STT-RAM technology area looks solid and Grandis appears to be a key player, making Krounbi's move much less of a gamble than it first appears. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Kingston DataTraveler MicroDuo: Turn your phone into a 72GB beast
USB-usiness in the front, micro-USB party in the back
AMD's 'Seattle' 64-bit ARM server chips now sampling, set to launch in late 2014
But they won't appear in SeaMicro Fabric Compute Systems anytime soon
Brit boffins use TARDIS to re-route data flows through time and space
'Traffic Assignment and Retiming Dynamics with Inherent Stability' algo can save ISPs big bucks
Microsoft's Nadella: SQL Server 2014 means we're all about data
Adds new big data tools in quest for 'ambient intelligence'
prev story

Whitepapers

Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.