IBM Corp. said it has found a way to improve computer memory access performance dramatically while reducing power consumption for its next-generation microprocessors that the company expects to start offering in 2008.
The company said in a paper presented at the International Solid State Circuits Conference in San Francisco today that the on-chip memory technology features "the fastest access times every recorded in eDRAM (embedded dynamic random access memory)."
IBM's eDRAM technology development would increase processing speed in applications such as graphics for gaming, networking and "other image intensive multi-media applications," the company said, in a statement.
Another key feature of the eDRAM technology is low power consumption that represents about 20 percent of current static random access memory (SRAM) products, IBM said.
According to IBM, the new technology was designed using the company's silicon-on-insulator and would feature prominently in its 45 nanometer microprocessor roadmap that would become available next year.
'With this breakthrough solution to the processor/memory gap, IBM is effectively doubling microprocessor performance beyond what classical scaling alone can achieve," said Subramanian Iyer, engineer and director of IBM's 45 nanometer technology development.
"As semiconductor components have reached the atomic scale, design innovation at the chip-level has replaced materials science as a key factor in continuing Moore's Law," Iyer said.
The new eDRAM technology "improves on-processor memory performance in about one-third the space with one-fifth the standby power of conventional SRAM," the company said in the statement.