Samsung discusses chip plans at Tech Day in San Jose • The Register

Samsung has gone public with new silicon and outlined plans for its semiconductor business, including upcoming DRAM and NAND flash developments, at its 2022 Samsung Tech Day in San Jose.

The semiconductor giant’s annual conference included presentations from Samsung’s memory and system LSI executives, who discussed the latest advances and its vision for the future.

The latter included the LSI Business system, which reaffirmed its intention to become a “total solution without fabless” design house that not only manufactures its own semiconductor products but can also develop those for customers by merging the various logic technologies into a single package .

“Samsung will converge and combine its technology embedded in various products such as SoC, sensor, DDI and modem to lead the fourth industrial revolution as a total solution provider,” said Samsung’s President and Head of System LSI Business, Yong-In Park.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution, which revolves around the automation and digitization of manufacturing, was a central theme of the event. The company sees its contribution in areas like neural processing and said it aims to develop the performance of such chips to a level where they can perform human tasks just as well as humans, but gave no timeline for when it was expected achieve this ambitious goal.

The event follows the chipmaker’s earlier Foundry Forum in the same city, which detailed plans to have 2nm chips in mass production for customers by 2025 and 1.4nm chips by 2027.

On the memory side, Samsung said the fifth generation of 10nm-class (1b) DRAMs is under development, with mass production planned for 2023. It is also looking beyond the 10nm space, developing technologies such as High-K materials to address the challenges of manufacturing DRAM with smaller process nodes, it said.

Samsung’s V-NAND flash technology is currently in its eighth generation, and the company announced that its 512GB TLC (triple-level cell) products will be replaced by a 1TB TLC version with high capacity, which will be available to customers by the end of the year.

The ninth generation of V-NAND is currently under development and is expected to go into mass production in 2024. Samsung predicts that its flash products will have over 1,000 layers by 2030, up from around 176 today. Samsung also said it plans to transition to quad-level cell (QLC) V-NAND as AI and big data applications drive the need for faster, higher-capacity flash products.

On the storage side, too, Samsung unveiled a new DRAM-less SSD, the PM9C1a, which supports both PCIe 4.0 and 5.0 host interfaces, but didn’t reveal any further details.

Samsung also announced its intention to expand commercial partnerships and announced it would open a Samsung Memory Research Center (SMRC) where customers and vendors can test and verify Samsung memory and software in various server environments.

The first SMRC is slated to open in Korea in the fourth quarter of this year, but Samsung plans to open more hubs in the US and around the world in partnership with companies like Red Hat and Google. ® Samsung discusses chip plans at Tech Day in San Jose • The Register

Rick Schindler

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