Samsung Readies High-Performance MLC-Based SSDs for Enterprise Storage

By Ashok Bindra December 22, 2010

Expanding its solid-state drives (SSDs) portfolio, Samsung Electronics Co., has started sampling 100, 200 and 400 gigabyte (GB) multi-level-cell (MLC) NAND flash-based solid state drives (SSDs) for use as the primary storage in enterprise storage systems. The new MLC-based SSDs are slated to go into production early next year.

By employing 30-nm class MLC NAND flash chips with a Toggle DDR interface and a controller that uses a 3 gigabits per second (Gbps) SATA interface, the performance of Samsung’s new MLC-based SSDs closely approaches or even exceeds some of the single-level-cell (SLC) NAND-based SSDs now in the marketplace, claims Samsung.

“As more and more server makers are adopting SSDs for use in eco-friendly platforms that consume less electrical power, the need for high-density SSDs in the server market is growing rapidly,” stated Byungse So, senior vice president of memory product planning and application engineering team for Samsung Electronics, in a statement. “While Samsung is already well situated in the SSD market for enterprise servers with high-performance SSDs using SLC NAND flash memory, we are now expanding our line-up to include high-density SSDs using MLC NAND flash memory,” added So.

The new drives can process random read commands at 43,000 input/outputs per second (IOPS) and random writes at 11,000 IOPS. By comparison to a 15K RPM HDD, which has an IOPS rate of 350, it amounts to a 120X gain in random IOPS read performance and a 30X gain in random IOPS write performance, according to Samsung.

In terms of power consumption, the new enterprise SSDs have a 150 times higher IOPS/Watt rate compared to 15K RPM HDDs. Thus, enabling them able to process 150 times more data while consuming the same amount of energy, said the maker.

In addition, the new Samsung SSDs feature an “end-to-end data protection” function with advanced data encryption algorithm to assure reliability and security for the drive. With the new SSDs, Samsung widens its range of SSD densities for server and storage applications to include 2.5 inch 50, 60, 100 and 120 GB SSDs using SLC NAND flash memory, and 2.5-inch 100, 200 and 400 GB SSDs using MLC NAND flash memory.

According to market research firm Gartner Inc., shipments of SSDs for servers and enterprise storage systems will increase to 6.3 million units in 2014 from 324K units in 2009. In revenue, the SSD enterprise market is expected to grow more than seven times from $485 million to $3.6 billion during the same period.

Ashok Bindra is a veteran writer and editor with more than 25 years of editorial experience covering RF/wireless technologies, semiconductors and power electronics. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Tammy Wolf

TechZone360 Contributor

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