Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New VRAM Memory Could Replace All Mechanically Driven Storage Media

Date:
March 7, 2000
Source:
Office Of Naval Research
Summary:
A revolutionary new type of digital storage memory, funded since its infancy by the Office of Naval Research, recently reached a milestone and transitioned into the testing and debugging phase of its development. This new technology -- Vertical Giant Magnetoresistance Random Access Memory, or VRAM -- was conceived and demonstrated by the Naval Research Laboratory and Carnegie Mellon University.

A revolutionary new type of digital storage memory, funded since its infancy by the Office of Naval Research, recently reached a milestone and transitioned into the testing and debugging phase of its development. This new technology -- Vertical Giant Magnetoresistance Random Access Memory, or VRAM -- was conceived and demonstrated by the Naval Research Laboratory and Carnegie Mellon University.

"The technology is a direct product of a basic research program supported for many years by ONR to explore new materials and concepts in magnetism, which is a strength of ONR programs," said Dr. Larry Cooper, the ONR program officer who funds the work.

VRAM memory has the potential to replace all mechanically driven storage media, including computer hard drives and compact discs. The new goal is a technology, which will produce a 100 to 1,000-fold increase in the storage capacity over semiconducting memory. The dynamic RAM used by today's personal computers must continually refresh their memory cells or all of the information contained in them would be lost. A static form of RAM exists that does not need constant refreshing, but it is expensive and consumes a lot of chip area.

VRAM dramatically reduces the need for transistors, leading to lower cost, and retains information without continual refreshing, reducing the power requirement. The information contained in the memory cells remains there, even when the power is turned off. The researchers estimate that VRAM technology will also increase memory access speed by a factor of 10. The high-density, non-volatility, radiation-hardness and low-power attributes of VRAM make it well suited to space, avionics, and shipboard applications. In addition to its freedom from moving mechanical parts, the technology is particularly advantageous when a component or system, once implemented, is difficult or impossible to retrieve.

In 1999, ONR awarded a contract to Nonvolatile Electronics, Inc., under the Navy Small Business Program, to develop the enabling technology for VRAM. The Minnesota-based company recently met its Phase I goals, which included completing a preliminary circuit design and outlining a process for fabricating integrated VRAM memory arrays. Under the Phase II portion of the contract, the company will design the circuits, develop processing technology, fabricate, test and debug the technology, then produce and demonstrate a prototype VRAM array fully integrated with silicon-based electronics.

"We're pleased at the progress Nonvolatile Electronics has made in bringing this technology closer to a manufacturing environment," Cooper said. "Ultimately, we believe it will be possible to produce vertical giant magnetoresistance memory cells on existing silicon processing lines with only minor modifications."

The total annual market for nonvolatile solid-state memory is estimated at more than $10 billion, with this new technology addressing a significant portion of that market.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Office Of Naval Research. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Office Of Naval Research. "New VRAM Memory Could Replace All Mechanically Driven Storage Media." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 March 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000307090734.htm>.
Office Of Naval Research. (2000, March 7). New VRAM Memory Could Replace All Mechanically Driven Storage Media. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 15, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000307090734.htm
Office Of Naval Research. "New VRAM Memory Could Replace All Mechanically Driven Storage Media." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000307090734.htm (accessed September 15, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Monday, September 15, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Frustration As Drone Industry Outpaces Regulation In U.S.

Frustration As Drone Industry Outpaces Regulation In U.S.

Newsy (Sep. 14, 2014) U.S. firms worry they’re falling behind in the marketplace as the FAA considers how to regulate commercial drones. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
iPhone 6 Sales Mark Yet Another Year Of Records, Glitches

iPhone 6 Sales Mark Yet Another Year Of Records, Glitches

Newsy (Sep. 13, 2014) Customers looking to preorder the iPhone 6 on Friday experienced a few hiccups thanks to record demand for the device overnight. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Photo-Sharing App Tiiny Really A Snapchat Competitor?

Is Photo-Sharing App Tiiny Really A Snapchat Competitor?

Newsy (Sep. 13, 2014) Tiiny, a photo-sharing app, is being called a Snapchat competitor. But after testing it ourselves, we'd have to disagree. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Batters Sierra Leone Economy Too

Ebola Batters Sierra Leone Economy Too

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 12, 2014) The World Health Organisation warns that local health workers in West Africa can't keep up with Ebola - and among those countries hardest hit by the outbreak, the economic damage is coming into focus, too. As David Pollard reports, Sierra Leone admits that growth in one of the poorest economies in the region is taking a beating. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins