The price of NAND Flash has started to fall again in recent months, and manufacturers are now focusing on 96-layer 3D flash memory, and will soon be moving to a new generation of 100-plus layer stacks. After 96 layers, Intel’s 144-layer QLC flash memory is now under development and is expected to be mass produced in the second half of the year, while new PLC flash memory is being planned.
The 144 Flash is Intel’s fourth generation of 3D flash memory, the previous three generations are 32 layers, 64 layers, 96 layers, this is Intel and Micron after the independent development of the next generation of flash memory, has been exposed last year, will continue to use the traditional FG floatgate technology, which is slightly more difficult to manufacture, but Intel referred to as its reliability is better than other manufacturers using THE CTP charge technology.
According to the latest news, Intel’s 144-layer QLC flash memory has been developed and is expected to be fully mass-produced in the second half of this year, with a core capacity of 1024Gbit, which is unchanged from the 1024Gbit core capacity of 96-tier QLC flash memory and uncertain about the internal improvements.
The 144-layer QLC flash memory is expected to soon be used in consumer and enterprise SSD drives, and 2018 is the first Intel/Micron to mass produce the first generation of QLC flash memory for SSD drives such as 660P and P1.
According to the previous plan, production of 144 layers of QLC flash memory will begin by the end of this year, and the SSD product line is expected to fully shift to 144 layers of QLC flash memory by 2021, which will further reduce the cost of flash memory and increase capacity.
In addition to QLC Flash, Intel is also developing PLC flash memory, or 5bit/cell, which theoretically increases capacity by 25% than QLC flash memory, further increasing capacity and reducing storage costs, but PLC flash memory is more complex, reliability and performance will decline, has been controversial, there is no NAND manufacturer announced mass production PLC.