Non volatile memory seen as successor to Flash

HP and Hynix set to bring ‘memristor’ RAM to the market

HP announced a joint venture with memory maker Hynix to bringe a new "memristor" technology to the market.

Memristors have long been theorised but HP Labs’ Information and Quantum Systems Laboratory (IQSL) first demonstrated their existence in 2006. Memory chips based on the technology have the potential to operate up to ten times faster and use ten times less power than Flash-based memory.

“We believe that the memristor is a universal memory that over time could replace Flash, DRAM, and even hard drives,” said HP senior fellow and IQSL founding director Dr. Stanley Williams.

The agreement between HP and Hynix will see them jointly developing memristor technology in the form of Resistive Random Access Memory (ReRAM). ReRAM is a non-volatile memory built using materials that change resistance when a voltage is applied across them.

“People have been attempting to make resistive memory for a long time,” explained Williams. “But because they didn’t understand that the devices they had were memristors, they weren’t making good progress. Once you understand the mathematical framework for memristors, you can design circuits that perform the way they are intended to perform.”

The companies are aspiring to have products on the market by 2013.

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