Samsung starts shipping 28nm embedded MRAM memory

Samsung announced that it has started to mass produce its first embedded MRAM, made using the company's 28nm FD-SOI process. Samsung says that its eMRAM memory module offers higher performance and endurance when compared to eFlash, and can be integrated into existing chips.

Samsung eMRAM image

Samsung details that its eMRAM is 1,000 times faster than its eFlash memory, and it does not require an erase cycle before writing data (unlike Flash memory). The voltage used is also lower - and in total eMRAM consumes 1/400 the energy compared to eFlash for the writing process. Samsung's MRAM capacity, though, is lower than its 3D Xpoint, DRAM and NAND flash.

Intel says its embedded 22nm MRAM is production ready

In October 2018 Intel revealed that it is developing embedded MRAM - and that the company has successfully integrated embedded MRAM into its 22nm FinFET CMOS technology on full 300mm wafers.

Intel 22nm eMRAM slide (Feb 2019)

Now Intel gave more details on its embedded STT-MRAM, and said that the technology is ready for high-volume manufacturing. Intel said it has used a "write-verify-write" scheme and a two-stage current sensing technique to create 7Mb perpendicular STT-MRAM arrays in its 22FFL FinFET process.

Gyrfalcon's new AI chip first to use TSMC's embedded MRAM

In June 2017 it was reported that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) will start producing embedded MRAM in 2018 using a 22 nm process. In what may bet he first adoption of TSMC's eMRAM technology, AI accelerator startup Gyrfalcon Technology announced the commercial availability of its LightSpeeur 2802M, AI ASIC that include TSMC's eMRAM.

The 2802M ASIC has 40MB of eMRAM memory, which can support large AI models or multiple AI models within a single chip. Applications include image classification, voice identification, voice commands, facial recognition, pattern recognition and more.

Yole Developpement sees STT-MRAM leading the embedded emerging-NVM market

Market analyst firm Yole Developpement presents its latest next-generation memory forecasts in an interesting new article. The company says that following more than 15 years of development, PCM is finally taking off in stand-alone applications due to strong support from Intel and Micron.

Emerging NVM market (2018-2023, Yole)

STT-MRAM is expected to lead the embedded memory race as many foundries are rushing to add MRAM support and expertise to their product lines. STT-MRAM is promising for enterprise storage SCM.

Spin Memory announces an MRAM IP licensing agreement with Arm

Spin Memory (previously Spin Transfer Technologies) announced that is has signed a licensing agreement with Arm. The license includes Spin Memory's Endurance Engine technology and IP - and as part of the agreement Arm and Spin memory will also work together to create SRAM-class MRAM design solutions.

Spin Memory's Endurance Engine is a design architecture that is used to develop embedded MRAM solutions.

Synopsys adds GF eMRAM support to its DesignWare STAR Memory System solution

Synopsys announced that it is set to add support for embedded MRAM designs to its DesignWare STAR Memory System solution. The new solution will offer new eMRAM memory built-in self-test (BIST), repair, and diagnostic capabilities, initially for GlobalFoundries eMRAM on its 22FDX process.

Synopsys DesignWare STAR memory system - MRAM support image

The STAR Memory System's new algorithms target failure mechanisms of embedded MRAM and other types of non-volatile memories during production and in-field test. Support for multiple background patterns and complex addressing modes accelerates automated test equipment (ATE) vector generation, resulting in the highest test coverage for eMRAM, maximized manufacturing yield, and improved system-on-chip (SoC) reliability.

Intel is developing embedded MRAM technologies

Intel says it will present a new paper detailing its MRAM research at the International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) in early December 2018. This is the first time we hear of any MRAM R&D at Intel which is great news, even if it just a research paper.

Intel MTJ array 22nm (Oct 2018)

Intel has apparently successfully integrated embedded MRAM into the company's 22nm FinFET CMOS technology on full 300mm wafers. The magnetic tunnel junction-based memory cells are built from dual MgO magnetic tunnel junctions (MTJs) separated by a CoFeB-based layer in a 1 transistor-1 resistor (1T-1R) configuration in the interconnect stack. Intel has manufactured a 7.2Mbit array with reported data retention figures in excess of 10 years and write endurance of greater than 10^6 cycles.

Avalanche sign an agreement with UMC for 28nm embedded STT-MRAM technology

pMTJ STT-MRAM developer Avalanche Technology announced that it has entered into a joint development and production agreement with Taiwan's United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC), a global semiconductor foundry.

UMC will provide embedded non-volatile STT-MRAM blocks based on UMC's 28nm CMOS manufacturing process, which will enable customers to integrate low latency, very high performance and low power embedded MRAM memory blocks into MCUs and SoCs, targeting the Internet of Things, wearable, consumer, industrial and automotive electronics markets.

ARM will launch an eMRAM compiler for Samsung's 28nm FDSOI process by the end of 2018

ARM announced that it is developing a compiler for embedded MRAM (eMRAM) for use with Samsung Foundry's 28nm fully-depleted silicon-on-insulator (FDSOI) integrated circuit manufacturing process. ARM completed its first eMARM IP test chip tape out, and the compiler will be available for use by lead partners in 4Q18.

ARM says that the eMRAM compiler can generate instances to replace Flash, EEPROM and slow SRAM/data buffer memories with a single non-volatile fast memory – particularly suited for cost- and power-sensitive IoT applications. The eMRAM can be integrated with as few as three additional masks, while embedded flash requires greater than 12 additional masks at 40nm and below.

Mentor to support eVaderis eMRAM technology on its FastSPICE platform

eVaderis announced that it is collaborating with Mentor to build advanced design solutions for embedded MRAM (eMRAM) technologies, based on Mentor's Analog FastSPICE (AFS) platform.

Earlier this month GlobalFoundries and eVaderis announced that the two companies are co-developing an ultra-low power microcontroller (MCU) reference design using GF’s embedded MRAM on the 22nm FD-SOI (22FDX) platform.