In a development that could mean CompactFlash card capacities of 2GB by the end of the year, Lexar announced that it is presently sampling a 2GB NAND flash card from Samsung.
Samsung’s 2GB NAND Flash memory devices will be tested by Lexar throughout the first half of the year and most likely see incorporation into Lexar’s Professional Series of CompactFlash cards. Lexar’s CompactFlash cards presently employ a 1GB NAND flash chip and have capacities topping off at 1GB, according to James Gustke, GM, Business Segment, Lexar Media.
CompactFlash cards come in two sizes, Type I and Type II. Type I cards have memory on only one side of its circuit board, allowing for a slightly smaller form factor. Type II cards, slightly larger, have memory storage on both sides of the board and hence higher capacities.
Lexar’s 1GB card is a Type II card. With the new 2GB NAND chip Gustke said Lexar would be able to produce a 1GB Type I card and probably a 2GB Type II card within a year.
“This will allow us to put more capacity into a smaller form factor with a faster operation,” Gustke said.
Samsung has been a key supplier of NAND Flash memory to Lexar Media for several years and the companies have a close working relationship, noted Gustke.
Samsung’s new 2GB NAND Flash memory device is the industry’s first to utilize 0.12-micron process technology, a step ahead in shrink technology from the company’s previous 0.15-micron process NAND flash devices. Because of its smaller cell size, production cost per bit is drastically reduced.
The combination of 0.12-micron process technology and the utilization of existing production lines greatly reduces manufacturing cost, enabling Samsung to produce the world’s highest capacity, 2GB NAND flash memory device while remaining price competitive.