Intel and Micron Create 3D Nand Chips, Make 10TB SSDs a possibility

Published: March 27, 2015 9:37 AM /



If you are a PC gamer, or just someone who likes windows booting up quickly, no doubt you have an SSD installed. While they have generally lower failure rates and are super quick, their limited capacity is an issue. At present, a 1TB SSD is the most you can hope for without putting a second mortgage on your house and selling an organ. But with this new three dimensional method of production, Intel and Micron hope to increase the capacity tenfold.

Currently, NAND chips are made with a two dimensional array, with the individual cells linked like rooms in a house. But this new three dimensional array technology will allow them to be built like a skyscraper, with every cell linked both vertically and horizontally. Intel and Micron have been quoted as saying these new chips will be able to pack an incredible 48GB per die.

3D NAND looks really cool
3D NAND looks really cool

This means for an M.2 sized SSD, you can cobble 3.5TB of storage together, and up to 10TB in a standard 2.5" drive. As if that isn't incredible enough, you also get a couple of added bonuses:

Because of the way the cells are packed together you also get a handy speed boost, but with no current quotable speeds, it's a little hard to say how much faster exactly. You also get a reduction in power, because you don't need to power as many cells to achieve a higher capacity.

The best part of the announcement is that consumer drives aren't a pipe-dream, with samples expected in the 3rd quarter of this year for manufacturers, and full production in Q4 of 2015.

If you are interested in storage technology at all, I highly recommend taking a look at the webcast that Intel and Micron put together, as it has a wealth of information.

Will you be an early adopter of this new tech? Or will you wait it out and let everyone else be guinea pigs? Let me know in the comments section.


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