Qimonda Shrinks Size, Trims Power Consumption of DDR3 Memory Chips

Qimonda Develops 2Gb DDR3 Chips at 46nm Process Technology

by Anton Shilov
02/04/2009 | 09:13 AM

Qimonda AG, the dynamic random access memory (DRAM) producer that filed for insolvency in January, has formally introduced its new memory chips, developed using Buried Wordline technology, which greatly reduce manufacturing costs as well as power consumption. Unfortunately, given current condition of Qimonda it remains to be seen whether the new products see the light of the day.


The new 2Gb DDR3 DRAM chip made using 46nm process technology has a die size of less than 55mm², which means that the amount of such chips on a 300mm wafer triples compared to 75nm process technology and thus is expected to increase production efficiency by 200%, according to Qimonda. The company did not reveal actual core-clock speed or voltage characteristics of its invention.

“With the first functional chips on 46nm, Qimonda shows the potential to regain technology leadership in the DRAM industry. The new 2Gb DDR3 is expected to significantly increase our productivity and reduce our cost per bit once it is ramped up in production. In addition, the new chip is ideally suited for high-density DDR3 server modules and will put us in the position of the energy efficiency leader in the market,” said Kin Wah Loh, president and chief executive officer of Qimonda AG.

Qimonda originally intended to start commercial production of the new chip by mid-2009 and is actively seeking financing partners to enable this timeline. With today’s announcement, Qimonda takes an important step towards establishing the viability of the core development and production capabilities of the company, which is a critical element of the search for new investors.

The focus on Buried Wordline technology is a key element of Qimonda's global restructuring and cost-reduction programme. At the same time, in order to stabilise its ongoing operations even further, loss-making products and contracts are being discontinued and core production activities are being intensified, the company said. This is the reason that production will be ramped down at the Richmond 300mm manufacturing facility, Virginia.

Qimonda said that given the current macroeconomic climate, it is not possible to finance a conversion of this facility for Buried Wordline technology production. In the future, more customers will be supplied with chips from the plant in Dresden. Production at the other Qimonda AG facilities continues for the time being.