The next big idea of combining memory and storage is something that everyone is looking out for. However, a research team at Lancaster University published a paper highlighting a breakthrough in the mass production of UltraRAM. Likewise, the idea behind UltraRAM is to merge both RAM and storage into one component.
UltraRAM is a unified memory solution with several attractive quirks. It combines parts of RAM (flash storage) and SSD storage (DRAM) to offer a super-fast memory solution that doesn’t release data when turned off. To understand it better, you need to understand UltraRAM’s core components.
UltraRAM merges memory and storage
If you own a modern PC or laptop, it most likely has a Solid State Drive or SSD. This storage component uses flash memory to store data and is non-volatile. Flash storage is non-volatile because it retains information or data even when you power off your computer. To clarify, non-volatile memory can store data even when no power is present.
On the other hand, the RAM component is a form of volatile memory. Hence, whenever your computer stores information on RAM, it will disappear the moment you power off the computer. Volatile memory requires constant power to store data, making data storage temporary.
Scientists at the Physics and Engineering department of Lancaster University have a new non-volatile memory solution called UltraRAM. It can store data without constant power while achieving the speeds of DRAM. Moreover, the researchers have found a way to mass-produce this new memory solution combining RAM and storage.
UltraRAM is likely a big deal because the memory solution on silicon could soon provide for all the memory needs of PCs and laptops. However, many have tried their hand at creating a universal memory solution by combining RAM and storage. For instance, Intel’s Optane memory came close to merging the two but now seems like a lost cause.
The research paper highlights the science behind UltraRAM’s design combining RAM and storage, but it’s pretty specific. In theory, it tries to be a one-stop solution for both RAM and storage. As a result, you could someday buy a single component of, say, 2TB that will act as memory and storage.