May 17th, 2012 by Brian Beeler
STEC Drives 24nm MLC NAND Endurance with CellCare Technology
One of the more popular trends in the enterprise SSD space is the movement toward eMLC and MLC NAND. The less expensive NAND still delivers much of the performance of the high-end SLC NAND, with substantially lower cost. Of course historically MLC NAND gives up endurance too, which is why the enterprise SSD market is finding creative ways to lengthen the life of the NAND. For its part, STEC has announced that it's CellCare Technology can boost 24nm MLC NAND endurance from the typical few thousand program/erase cycles to 40,000 P/E cycles, a 13X improvement.
In practical terms, with MLC NAND and CellCare, STEC can hit 10 full capacity random writes to an SSD daily for five years. For a 400GB SSD this translates to a minimum of 7.2PB of data being written to the drive over its five year duty life.
CellCare is a combination of hardware and firmware working in tandem to improve MLC NAND endurance and performance. STEC highlights several key features of the technology:
- Flash parameter tracking per die, which delivers reduced and controlled wear
- Flash management through the lifetime, which delivers reduced wear, controlled performance, improved performance, and lower write/read latency
- Advanced error correction with digital signal processing to improve data reliability and require a minimum of re-reads.
CellCare is part of STEC's entire line of enterprise-grade MLC NAND SSDs and application accelerators. STEC's 24nm MLC NAND flash-based SSDs are currently in development and testing.