Samsung begins mass production of 2nd-generation HBM2 memory

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Samsung on Thursday announced it has started mass production of its second-generation 8GB High Bandwidth Memory-2 (HBM2).

The new solution, Aquabolt, which is the company's 2nd-generation 8GB HBM2 DRAM to deliver a 2.4 gigabits-per-second (Gbps) data transfer speed per pin at 1.2 volt, can process 307GB of data, which is equivalent to 61 full HD 5GB movies, in one second. The Aquabolt HBM2 is basically a much faster variant of the original HBM2 capable of achieving 2.4 Gbps speeds and an 8-Hi height (8GB) which would make it ideal for many situations including but not limited to data centers and of course graphics cards.This would be the first time an HBM2 product delivers 2.4 Gbps out of the box. For comparison, an 8 Gb GDDR5 chip can provide 32 GB/s bandwidth, using a 32-bit bus.

Samsung's first 8GB HBM2 package offered a transfer rate of 1.6Gbps at 1.2V (and 2.0Gbps at 1.35V). By using four HBM2 packages, it is possible to achieve a 1.2TBps bandwidth, which is a 50 percent improvement compared to standard 1.6Gbps HBM2 chips. Samsung used new technologies within their TSV design, as well as tweaks to thermal control.

Thus far Samsung has not offered details on when the first Aquabolt-based HBM2 products will be hitting the market, but is clearly expecting the parts to feature heavily in next-gen products in the fields of 'supercomputing, artificial intelligence, and graphics processing'.

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A single 8GB HBM2 package, for example, consists of eight 8Gb HBM2 dies that are vertically interconnected using over 5,000 TSVs per die.

Samsung also added more thermal bumps between the HBM2 dies, something that will help with heat dissipation and it also doubles as a protective layer at the bottom of the HBM2 stack.

An official from Samsung Electronics said, "With the latest mass production, Samsung Electronics is the only company in the industry that supplies the HBM2 DRAM chip".

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