Issue: Jul 2009


Ramtron Announces 8-Megabit Parallel Nonvolatile F-RAM Memory



Space Efficient Ball Grid Array Package Offers Pin-Compatible Upgrade Path for F-RAM

by Lenny Case

Ramtron International, a leading developer and supplier of nonvolatile ferroelectric random access memory (F-RAM) and integrated semiconductor products, today announced the availability of its 8-Megabit (Mb) F-RAM memory in a streamlined FBGA package. The FM23MLD16 is an 8-Mbit, 3-volt, parallel nonvolatile RAM in a 48-pin Fine-Pitch Ball Grid Array (FBGA) package that features fast access, virtually unlimited read/write cycles and low power consumption. Pin-compatible with asynchronous static RAM (SRAM), the FM23MLD16 targets industrial control systems such as robotics, network RAID storage solutions, multi-function printers, auto navigation systems, and a host of other SRAM-based system designs.

"The 8-Mbit F-RAM parallel memory and our recently released 4-Mbit FM22LD16 are designed to meet customer demand for higher density memory for write-intensive data collection applications," remarks Mike Peters, Ramtron marketing manager. "Both products are pin-compatible, enabling an easy density upgrade. The FM23MLD16 allows system designers eight times the F-RAM density in an equivalent TSOP32 package footprint," adds Peters.

Product Features

The FM23MLD16 is organized as a 512K x 16 nonvolatile memory, accessed with an industry standard parallel interface. Access time is 60ns and cycle time is 115ns. The device reads and writes at bus speed for NoDelay(TM) writes with endurance of at least 1E14
(100-trillion) writes and 10-year data retention.

The FM23MLD16 offers superior performance over battery-backed SRAM (BBSRAM), as it does not require a battery for data backup. The FM23MLD16 is a true surface-mount solution, requiring no rework steps for battery attachment and, unlike battery-backed SRAM, is highly resistant to moisture, shock and vibration, making F-RAM ideal for harsh industrial applications. The FM23MLD16 includes a low voltage monitor that blocks access to the memory array when supply voltage drops below a critical threshold. The memory is protected against an inadvertent access and data corruption under this condition.

With a convenient interface to current high-performance microprocessors, the FM23MLD16 features a high-speed page mode that enables 8-byte burst read/write operations at up to 33MHz. The device draws 9 milliamps for reads/writes and a typical standby current of 180 microamps. It operates from 2.7 to 3.6 volts over the industrial temperature range (-40 degrees C to +85 degrees C).

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