Intel and Micron Unveil 25nm NAND Flash - HotHardware

Intel and Micron Unveil 25nm NAND Flash

0 thumbs up


In January 2006, Micron and Intel formed IM Flash Technologies, LLC. IMFT combines the technology, assets, and industry experience of the two companies to create NAND flash memory. Jointly investing over $2 billion dollars, they opened up a semiconductor fabrication plant in Lehi, Utah which currently operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This fab employs about two thousand people. 


 

IMFT is currently celebrating their 4 year anniversary as a silicon manufacturing machine for the two industry heavyweights. The companies are combining Micron's manufacturing and NAND expertise along with Intel's multi-level cell knowledge in order to move the technology forward.
 
To coincide with the 25nm process technology announcement, a select group of press was allowed to enter the IMFT fab and given a tour of the site. We were the first group of press and analysts to see the plant. As you can imagine, security was tight and we were not allow to use photography of any kind during the expedition. Instead, IMFT provided us with the following images which mirror the sights we were shown during our tour.



 
 
 

The central area of the fab is the clean room, where the environment is controlled and air is scrubbed to eliminate dust down to micrometer size and no more than 10 particles per cubic meter levels. Before entering the fabrication areas, we put on clean room suits also known as bunny suits. These garments covered all parts of the body with the exception of eyes and the nose. Once inside, the lack of people working inside the fab was surprising. It was explained that most of the people we saw were technicians conducting preventive maintenance and ensuring the equipment operated within specifications. What the images are unable to show is the bustling movement of machinery occurring overhead and along the walls of this fully automated fab, carrying materials to the various stations within the plant. 




 
 
 

Each orange container contains 25 wafers. Once the container reaches a point in the fabrication chain, the wafers are individually worked on by the fab tools. Then the container is carried to the next piece of equipment and the process is repeated. The last couple of images are looking up at the ceiling and show the elaborate transportation system that the containers travel from one tool to the next.



 
We really enjoyed our tour inside the manufacturing plant. The entire process of donning bunny suits and witnessing the fabrication process occurring right before our eyes was interesting to say the least. As technology enthusiasts, we traditionally deal with the end product and rarely get the chance to see where the individual components came from or how they were manufactured. The IMFT tour was definitely an eye opening experience and one that we won't forget anytime soon. What's perhaps even more interesting however, will be the fruits of Intel and MIcron's collective efforts with their new 25nm NAND technology.  We'll be here to deliver you more of that story in the weeks ahead.

Article Index:

1 2 Next
0
+ -

Awesome, this means cheaper and bigger SSDs! We should be seeing 600GB by the end of this year. Looks like Intel and Micron are about a year ahead of the competition.

So I wonder if this was the wafer Matt was holding in the other pic.

0
+ -

when those SSDs come out i'll be sure to buy one ;)

 

Maybe it was what matt was holding...

0
+ -

I am very glad to hear this, speed is not necessarily a whole software library needed thing. This is in regards to the largest amount of storage, such as songs and movies. They work fine on huge sata drives and will do so even better on sata3 but are not needed for that media. SSD in my opinion benefits large all inclusive (OS and its virtual schemes), and games that require fast information movement, as well as file copying transfer etc. SO a cheaper 100GB sata 3 SSD drive is perfect for an OS and 2 60GB in raid 0 or 3 in raid 5 is even better, with a 2TB media hardware sata3 drive or 2. Get to dropping prices.

0
+ -

I agree  I would love a couple 60's or higher in raid 0 on the fastest speed I can get for an OS program drive!

0
+ -

smaller memory ssd and cpu's seem to be rolling in, don't they I have a feeling 2010 will be even faster than 2009 or maybe even 2007

0
+ -

I can't wait to have a SSD in my machine. The Speed oh the Speed will be nice. It will be nice when 250Gb SSD are around 200 bucks, that will mean fast boot drive plus room for plenty of software. Get 2 of them in RAID 0 oh the insanity!

0
+ -

I want 4-500GB SSD's in Raid in each computer. AND,.....I want to be able to afford it too! Smile

 

On a side note: We used to have to wear those white suits when we worked inside of the Space Shuttles when we built them.

We dubbed them "Bunny Suits".

0
+ -

I think the affording part will be the hardest to meet neil.

0
+ -

Although seeing this technology move fast is very nice. The only thing that makes this scary is Intel has already said 22nm was the smallest they could see nand getting and still being reliable. This may have changed, but thats what they said not to long ago.

0
+ -

I agree bighorse I would love a couple 60's or higher in raid 0 on the fastest speed I can get for an OS program drive!

1 2 Next
Login or Register to Comment
Post a Comment
Username:   Password: