UPDATED. 2024-07-12 07:53 (금)
Neosem supplies CXL 2.0 memory inspection kit to Samsung
Neosem supplies CXL 2.0 memory inspection kit to Samsung
  • JY Han
  • 승인 2024.07.04 16:06
  • 댓글 0
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World’s first of Advantest, Teradyne
Image: Samsung
Image: Samsung

Fab equipment maker Neosem has supplied new inspection equipment for use in Compute Express Link (CXL) 2.0 memory production, becoming the first company to do so, TheElec has learned.

The customer is Samsung and the equipment is used to determine whether memory modules that support CXL 2.0 are operating properly at the tail-end of the production process. The equipment also offers burn-in tests, where the memory is put through different temperatures.

Neosem previously offered a similar equipment to Samsung for CXL 1.1.

Its delivery is faster than competitors Advantest of Japan, Teradyne of the US, and compatriot rival Exicon. The deal will also open Neosem to have an earlier foothold for CXL 3.0. The fab equipment maker is also currently developing a CXL 3.0 equivalent to the machine, which is expected to sell for tens of millions of dollars per unit.

CXL is a PCIe-based high-speed interconnect standard allowing faster data transfer between the CPU, memory, and GPU. The related consortium that sets the standard was formed in March 2019, and members include Samsung, Intel, Microsoft, Facebook, Google, and Amazon.

CXL is being touted as potentially game-changing for data centers for three reasons: bandwidth, flexibility, and scalability. 

A dual-channel DDR5 DRAM offers a bandwidth of 51.2GB per second, while CXL 2.0 PCIe 5.0 will deliver 64GB. CXL can distribute memory capacity between heterogeneous chips (CPU, GPU, FPGA) for smoother data transfer. And unlike DDR5 DRAM modules that are limited by how many slots there are in the mainboard, CXL, through memory sharing and switching can connect more memory modules.

Currently, in the CPU that supports CXL 1.1 and 2.0, there is Intel’s Sierra Forest, based on Xeon 6 E-cores. Samsung also unveiled a CXL Memory Module – Hybrid (CMM-H) that combines NANDs and DRAMs, CMM-Box (B) that combines eight DRAM modules, and Rack Scale Memory Bank that combines CMM-B into a server rack.

According to sources, Samsung is investing heavily in CXL to offset its lagging behind in high-bandwidth memory (HBM), and plans to take leadership in CXL starting with CXL 2.0 up to 3.0.

The CXL market is expected to open in earnest with PCIe 6.0-based CXL 3.0 (which will offer a 256GB bandwidth per second). Intel’s Diamond Rapids launching next year will also support CXL 3.0. 

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