Renesas has a family of memory and control plane (I3C) expanders to significantly improve signal integrity and performance in a wide variety of applications, including NVDIMMs, SSDs, and control plane applications utilizing the new I3C JEDEC standard.
NVDIMM modules use Renesas multiplexers to steer data from DRAM to flash during a power outage backup scenario. SSDs use Renesas multiplexers to increase performance without compromising on flash capacity. These products can also be used for other applications requiring high performance, low power, and has easy-to-use bidirectional signaling capabilities in a small footprint.
The latest addition to the control plane expanders is a family of I3C products that deliver increased flexibility and 12MHz speeds in a small footprint, as well as an integrated temperature sensor.
About NVDIMM Memory Multiplexer Applications
DDR4-based high-speed RDIMM and LRDIMM memory modules play an integral role in the enterprise server market; however, during an unexpected power outage, the information currently stored in these DRAMs can be lost. For some server applications, NVDIMMs add an extra layer of safety by backing up the information from the DRAMs to flash during the last few milliseconds of available power, just before the power outage. During normal high-speed operation, Renesas 1:2 multiplexers steer DRAM address and data to the DIMM’s edge connector to make it accessible by the server’s host controller. During the backup and restore operation, the same multiplexers steer DRAM address and data to a local flash subsystem so that the volatile DRAM data can be preserved in flash during the power outage.
About SSD Memory Multiplexer Applications
Until now, SSD capacity has been limited, to a large extent, by the pin count of the SSD controller ASIC. Adding more flash memory without compromising speed requires additional address and data lines coming out of the controller to control the additional flash banks. At some point, the additional ASIC pin count becomes impractical or too expensive. Renesas' 1:4 multiplexers allow the ASIC pin count to grow at about one-fourth the rate. That is, for every four banks of additional flash devices, only one additional address/data port has to be added to the controller. This allows a 4X increase in flash capacity for the same ASIC pin count. If the SSD form factor has room for additional flash capacity, Renesas recommends using multiple 1:4 multiplexers as part of the solution.