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Elpida Memory, a leading manufacturer of dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips, and United Microelectronics Company, a contract semiconductor foundry, on Monday announced a joint development program for advanced DRAM with copper low-k backend, as well as for phase-change random access memory (PRAM).

“This agreement with UMC is a significant step forward for future memory development, as copper low-k technology will help drive the production and continued process migration of high performance DRAMs. UMC’s leading-edge technology together with Elpida’s advanced DRAM technology will enable us to provide our customers with DRAMs featuring high speeds, low-power consumption and high density, while accelerating the commercialization of PRAMs, an important next generation memory technology,” said Takao Adachi, chief technology officer at Elpida.

Elpida and UMC’s cooperation targets the development of advanced DRAM by joining Elpida’s technology excellence with UMC’s advanced copper low-k processes and technology development expertise. With the success of this collaboration, UMC will license Elpida under UMC’s copper low-k technology for Elpida’s production and Elpida will license UMC to offer DRAM as part of UMC’s advanced system-on-chip (SoC) solutions.

In addition, under the terms of their arrangement, Elpida and UMC will cooperate to develop P-RAM technology, coupling Elpida’s expertise in GST materials with UMC’s expertise in high performance CMOS logic technologies.

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