Hynix begins mass production of “20nm class” NAND Flash

64Gbit chips ahoy

HYNIX HAS FOLLOWED in Samsung’s footsteps by starting mass production of “20nm class” NAND Flash memory. However, it seems like Hynix is first with 64Gbit NAND Flash using sub 32nm manufacturing technology.

We’re getting a little bit tired of the “XXnm class” game though, as it seems like no-one likes to talk specifics anymore, as it might give their competitors and advantage, or something. We’d presume the new NAND Flash memory chips from Hynix are manufactured using a 26nm manufacturing technology, as the company has previously stated that this is the process it was set to use for NAND Flash memory. Samsung on the other hand is meant to be making its “20nm class” NAND Flash at 27nm, while Intel and Micron has gone for 25nm.

By moving from 3Xnm to 2Xnm the NAND Flash manufacturers are not only increasing their output per wafer, but the manufacturing cost per chip is also reduced. Hynix claims to have increased its production by 60 percent over its 3Xnm generation of products, which is a huge increase. However, with a high demand for NAND Flash, it’s unlikely that we’ll see much of a drop in terms of pricing in the short term, although with a wholesale generation shift of manufacturing technology we should see more cost effective NAND Flash products long term.

Hynix is also working with an Israeli company called Anobit to incorporate its NAND Flash controller into some of its new 26nm NAND Flash products, although these won’t be validated until next month. As far as 64Gbit NAND Flash is concerned, Toshiba launched its 64Gbit solution back in June, but this is based on a “30nm class” manufacturing process and as such won’t be competitive on price against the new Hynix chips. The new NAND Flash from Hynix is manufactured on 300mm wafers and if yields are good, then Hynix should be able to make some serious money on its new memory chips, at least until its competitors catch up.S|A

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