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Samsung Squeezes 30TB Into a 2.5-Inch SSD

20 February 2018

Back in 2016, Samsung began shipping a 15.6TB SSD, which at the time, was the world's highest capacity. It's called the PM1643 and uses Samsung's latest 64-layer 3-bit 512-gigabit chips.

Samsung has announced that it has started mass production of 30.72TB SSDs. It delivers almost twice the capacity and performance of the previous generation. The drive uses 32 1TB NAND flash packages, each of which contains 16 stacked layers of 512Gb V-NAND chips.

Samsung defines the PM1643 as "the industry's largest capacity Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) solid state drive". That's a massive boost over what you get from a good SATA SSD these days, such as the current-gen Samsung 860 EVO, which maxes out at speeds of 550MB/s (read) and 520MB/s (write). Meanwhile, sequential speeds come in at 2,100MB/s for read and 1,700MB/s for write tests, per the company.

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"With our launch of the 30.72TB SSD, we are once again shattering the enterprise storage capacity barrier, and in the process, opening up new horizons for ultra-high capacity storage systems worldwide", says Executive Vice President, Memory Sales, and Marketing Team, Samsung Electronics, Jaesoo Han.

Samsung is utilizing several technology progressions to achieve this level of capacity and performance, including controller design, DRAM packaging and associated software/firmware. More accurately, nine controllers from the previous SSD range integrated into a single package. This is notably the first time when an SSD has included a TSV-applied DRAM. The new drive also incorporates the TSV (Through Silicon Via) technology that interconnects 8Gb DDR4 chips creating up to 10 units of 4GB TSV DRAM units, with a total of 40GB of DRAM.

Coming to the software front, the PM1643 supports metadata protection. The mean time between failures is 2 million hours. This new drive offers nearly double of what it had launched about two years ago, a 15.36TB drive which at its time was the highest capacity SSD. The prime target for these versions includes various market segments such as the government, financial services, healthcare, education, oil and gas, pharmaceutical, social media, business services, retail, and communications sectors.

Samsung Squeezes 30TB Into a 2.5-Inch SSD