April 23rd, 2014 by Brian Beeler
SanDisk and Toshiba Announce 15nm NAND Flash
SanDisk and Toshiba have announced they expect to begin volume shipments of 15nm NAND in the second half of this year. Thus far production quality NAND has largely crept down to the 19/20nm range. The joint venture will ramp the 15nm flash technology into two bits-per-cell and three bits-per-cell NAND flash memory architectures. The work will be done in Fab 5, replacing 19nm NAND fabrication. A second stage of Fab 5 is currently under construction that will also handle 15nm NAND.
SanDisk calls the process node "the industry’s most advanced...enabling us to deliver the world’s smallest and most cost effective 128 gigabit chips.” The venture is leveraging process and design innovations to scale the chips along both axes. Further SanDisk is incorporating their All-Bit-Line (ABL) architecture that houses their own programming algorithms and storage management schemes without impacting performance or reliability. The new flash chips are expected to drive the same write performance as 19nm technology, but with a data transfer rate that's 30% faster thanks to a new higher speed interface.
While details are thin beyond the technology highlights, SanDisk and Toshiba expect to utilize 15nm NAND though all of their flash solutions from memory cards to enterprise SSD solutions.