China's YMTC is the first to produce 232-layer NAND

China's YMTC is the first to produce 232-layer NAND

With the spread like wildfire of solid-state memories in today's devices, 3D NAND memories have progressively accelerated their development, in order to offer ever more capacious and faster modules. The adoption of stacking has made it possible to stack the memory cells vertically, increasingly increasing the capacity per module. The more modern ones, made by industry giants such as Kioxia, Micron, Samsung and SK Hynix, integrate cells with up to 200 layers, a number that has just been surpassed by the Chinese YMTC, which managed to create the first 232-layer modules thanks to a new stacking technology.

The company had already announced these new memories, called YMTC X3-9070 , in August of this year, together with the new Xtacking 3.0 architecture. This is a proprietary method that allows you to effectively stack a large number of cells. With this launch, YMTC manages to get ahead of several competitors including Micron, which had the same modules ready, but faced production delays. This is a remarkable achievement for a company that has only been in the industry since 2016.

Source: YMTC

Source: YMTC Xtacking 3.0 makes use of the so-called back side source connection (BSSC), which allows additional silicon to be connected through a simpler process, resulting in lower production costs compared to the previous Xtacking 2.0 technology. YMTC made its industry debut with the first version of Xtacking, which allowed stacking up to 64 layers through a wafer-to-wafer link, while in 2020 it was able to offer 128-layer memories with Xtacking 2.0. The new modules will certainly find several customers, including manufacturers of smartphones, smart TVs, laptops and SSDs, who will be able to benefit from reduced design costs by using fewer memory chips, thanks to the higher density per module.

3D memories In the meantime, NAND continues to depreciate, progressively decreasing the price of solid-state storage units: we talked about it in this article.