Toshiba Develops World's First Multi-level-cell Structure MROM Cell

TOKYO — (BUSINESS WIRE) — June 12, 2013Toshiba Corporation (TOKYO:6502) today announced that the development of the world's first MROM cell to offer improved cell current characteristics without any increase in cell size. This advance was achieved by adopting a multi-level-cell structure, which also secures high speed operation. Details will be presented on June 14 at the 2013 Symposia on VLSI Technology and Circuits, held in Kyoto, Japan, June 11-14, 2013.

MROM's main role is to store the boot loader or firmware. The density of MROM implemented is SoC for such digital applications as smartphones and tablet PCs is increasing year by year, and in order to improve access time it is necessary to halve the MROM cell area with every generation.

In a typical MROM bit cell, a single-level cell, variations in fabrication are increasing as SoC process technology advances, with the narrowing of the channel area of the cell transistors. The result is a slower access time for the 40nm generation than for the previous process generation. Improving access time requires a larger transistor, as a bigger cell area secures a wider channel area.

Toshiba has developed a multi-bit cell that uses twice the area of a standard single level cell, successfully expanding channel width in the cell transistor by three times. This also triples the current characteristic of the cell without any change in the memory capacity per area. It reduces the influence of the variation in fabrication by 42%.

Toshiba has developed of MROM cell with the 40nm process generation and aims to ship SoC for digital applications that implement the cell in 2014.

About Toshiba

Toshiba is a world-leading diversified manufacturer, solutions provider and marketer of advanced electronic and electrical products and systems. Toshiba Group brings innovation and imagination to a wide range of businesses: digital products, including LCD TVs, notebook PCs, retail solutions and MFPs; electronic devices, including semiconductors, storage products and materials; industrial and social infrastructure systems, including power generation systems, smart community solutions, medical systems and escalators & elevators; and home appliances.

Toshiba was founded in 1875, and today operates a global network of more than 550 consolidated companies, with 202,000 employees worldwide and annual sales surpassing 6.1 trillion yen (US$74 billion). Visit Toshiba's web site at www.toshiba.co.jp/index.htm



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