by Lyle Smith

WD Announces BiCS5, 5th-Generation 3D NAND Technology

Western Digital (WD) today announced its fifth-generation 3D NAND technology. Built on TLC and QLC technologies, BiCS5 will have a competitive price tag while delivering excellent capacity, performance and reliability. WD indicates that these characteristics will make it ideal for the exponential growth of data in the areas of connected cars, mobile devices, and artificial intelligence.

Initial production of BiCS5 TLC in a 512-Gb chip has begun and is currently shipping consumer products using this new technology. WD says that mainstream production of BiCS5 TLC and BiCS5 QLC is slated to start sometime in the second half of 2020 and will be available in a range of capacities, including 1.33Tb.

BiCS5 is WD’s highest density and most advanced 3D NAND, leveraging 2nd-gen multi-tier memory hole technology, improved engineering processes, and other 3D NAND cell enhancements. Combined, they are expected to drastically increase cell array density horizontally across the wafer. WD continues, indicating that, when combined with 112 layers of vertical memory capability, these “lateral scaling” advancements enable BiCS5 to offer up to 40 percent more bits of storage capacity per wafer compared to the company’s previous 96-layer BiCS4 technology. Moreover, its improved design enhancements also offer up to 50 percent faster I/O performance.

WD developed BiCS5 technology jointly with Kioxia Corporation and will be manufactured at the joint venture fabrication facilities in Yokkaichi in Mie Prefecture, Japan and Kitakami City, Iwate Prefecture, Japan.

Western Digital

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