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Micron mass produces the world‘s first 176-layer NAND, where will the market go?

Time:2020-11-11 Views:362
Micron announced on November 9 that it has begun mass production of the world‘s first 176-layer 3D NAND Flash. Compared with the previous generation of 128-layer 3D NAND technology, the read latency and write latency are improved by more than 35%. Based on the ONFI interface protocol specification, the maximum data transfer rate is 1600 MT/s, which is 33% higher, and the performance of mixed workloads is improved. 15%, the compact design reduces the die size by about 30%, and each wafer will produce more GB equivalent of NAND Flash.
Micron’s new 176-layer 3D NAND has been mass-produced at the Singapore plant and has been sampled to customers through its Crucial consumer SSD product line. It will launch new products based on this technology in 2021, targeting 5G, AI, cloud and intelligence The growth opportunities in the edge field meet the growing storage needs in the mobile, automotive, client and data center fields.
How is the progress of other original 3D NAND?
Mass production of the sixth-generation (1xx layer) TLC V-NAND began in August 2019, and based on this technology, PM9A3 series SSDs for consumer 980 PRO and data centers were launched. In order to improve market competitiveness, Samsung is accelerating the research and development of the seventh-generation V-NAND (above 160 layers), and is expected to start production in the new Pyeongtaek NAND production line in the second half of 2021 to meet the growing demand for data centers and smart phone storage .
Kioxia/Western Digital
In 2019, based on the 96-layer QLC single die capacity, 1.33Tb capacity has been achieved. The fifth-generation 3D NAND technology launched in early 2020The technology uses 112-layer stacked BiCS5, and the initial mass production is 512Gb TLC products, which have been sold for consumer products, and the QLC single die capacity will reach 1.33Tb.
SK Hynix

In May 2019, we will send samples of 96-layer QLC 4D NAND with a single Die capacity of 1Tb. In the following month of the same year, we will launch a 128-layer 4D TLC NAND. In the second half of 2020, we will send samples of the new technology enterprise PE8111 series SSD with a capacity of up to 16TB. And plans to develop 32TB capacity enterprise SSD in the future.
In addition, SK Hynix has begun to sell 128-layer NAND Flash products in the third quarter of 2020 to respond to the stable mobile demand in the market. It is expected that the supply will continue to increase in the fourth quarter.

Intel has successfully developed a 144-layer stacked QLC flash memory with a capacity that is about 50% higher than that of the 96-layer QLC. The plan is to put it into production before the end of 2020, and will launch consumer and enterprise-level SSDs based on the new technology.
Although SK Hynix has acquired Intel‘s NAND business, including the 3D NAND plant in Dalian, China, until 2025, Intel will continue to operate the Dalian plant and manufacturing design technology. After the current 144-layer node, it is expected to expand for two to three generations.
Yangtze River Storage

In the first half of 2020, a 128-layer QLC 3D NAND (model: X2-6070) was released, with 1.6Gb/s high-speed read and write performance and 1.33Tb single Die capacity, and has been verified on terminal storage products such as SSDs from many controller manufacturers. At the same time, YMTC also released 128-layer 512Gb TLC 3D NAND (model: X2-9060) to meet the needs of different application scenarios.
3D NAND technology enters the competition of more than 100 layers, where will the market go?
3D NAND technology is the core competitiveness, and the competition between original manufacturers has never stopped. In 2020, the main supply of original 3D NAND will still be 96-layer, and the output of 128-layer 3D NAND will continue to increase. At the same time, Samsung, SK Hynix and others are actively introducing into consumer and enterprise SSD applications.
With the development of 3D NAND technology, Samsung, Kioxia, Western Digital, Micron, SK Hynix 3D NAND technology has developed to 128 layers, and the new Flash original manufacturer Yangtze Memory has also followed up and released 128-layer TLC/QLC. Now Micron Be the first to launch the world‘s first 176-layer 3D NAND, making the technology competition between the original manufacturers more intense.
With the increase in the number of 3D NAND stacking layers, 3D NAND technology has gone through several stacking stages such as 24 layers, 48 ​​layers, 64 layers, 96 layers, and 128 layers. The capacity of a single NAND Flash Die has also grown to 1Tb, and now it has entered 100 layers. Above stacking, NAND Flash supply will further increase.
In contrast to the status quo of the NAND Flash market, the price quotations in the past two years can be described as ups and downs. Not only experienced the cold winter of 2019, but also suffered a severe impact from the "epidemic" in 2020, resulting in a sharp decline in mobile phone market demand. In addition, market demand in the data center field has cooled in the second half of 2020. , The industry chain storage companies are already moving forward with heavy burdens. Now the overseas "epidemic" strikes again, and the Q4 storage industry is once again in trouble.
Driven by the continuous upgrading of original 3D NAND technology, NAND Flash production capacity will inevitably increase. When market demand in the storage industry is sluggish, it will undoubtedly bring greater pressure on short-term market prices. However, from the perspective of industrial development, the upgrade of NAND Flash technology will also stimulate the performance improvement of mainstream products such as eMMC, UFS, SSD, and the increase in capacity, which will bring more innovation opportunities.
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