Ramtron Creates 4-Megabit Nonvolatile FRAM Memory

Ramtron International Corporation (Nasdaq: RMTR), a leading developer and supplier of nonvolatile ferroelectric random access memory (FRAM) and integrated semiconductor products, launched the semiconductor industry’s first 4-megabit (Mb) FRAM memory — the highest-density FRAM product available. The FM22L16 is a 4Mb, 3-volt, parallel nonvolatile RAM in a 44-pin thin small outline plastic (TSOP) package that features fast access, virtually unlimited read/write cycles and low power consumption. Pin-compatible with asynchronous static RAM (SRAM), the FM22L16 targets industrial control systems such as robotics, network and data storage applications, multi-function printers, auto navigation systems and a host of other SRAM-based system designs.

“The 4Mb FRAM breaks new technological ground that will carry Ramtron and FRAM into new and innovative applications,” explains Ramtron Vice President Mike Alwais. “The FM22L16 moves FRAM technology onto a mainstream and proven process node from TI that offers many new stand-alone and integrated product opportunities. This introduction positions FRAM as an ideal nonvolatile memory solution with potential to alter the memory landscape.”

Product Features
The FM22L16 is organized as a 256K x 16 nonvolatile memory, accessed with an industry standard parallel interface. Access time is 55ns and cycle time is 110ns. The device reads and writes at bus speed for NoDelay(TM) writes with endurance of at least 1e14 (100-trillion) writes and 10-year data retention.

This 4Mb FRAM is a drop-in replacement for standard asynchronous SRAMs, but far superior as it does not require a battery for data backup and is inherently more reliable due to its monolithic form. The FM22L16 is a true surface-mount solution, requiring no rework steps for battery attachment and, unlike SRAM, is highly resistant to moisture, shock and vibration.

With a convenient interface to current high-performance microprocessors, the FM22L16 features a high-speed page mode that enables 4-byte burst read/write operations at up to 40MHz, a bus speed significantly higher than conventional RAM. The device boasts a lower operating current than standard SRAMs, drawing 18 milliamps for reads/writes and an ultra low current sleep mode of 5 microamps. It operates from 2.7 to 3.6 volts over the industrial temperature range (-40 degrees C to +85 degrees C).

About TI’s Advanced 130 Nanometer (nm) Process for FRAM
The FM22L16 is based on TI’s proven, advanced 130nm CMOS manufacturing process. Only two additional mask steps have been used to embed the non-volatile FRAM module within the standard CMOS 130nm logic process. TI and Ramtron detailed their commercial manufacturing arrangement and disclosed further details of TI’s 130nm process for Ramtron’s FRAM products in a separate press release today.

Pricing and Availability
Engineering samples of the FM22L16 are available now. Limited volumes of the FM22L16 are planned for the third quarter of 2007, with full volume production slated for the fourth quarter. The device is available in a 44-pin TSOP-II package that is RoHS-compatible. Pricing starts at $19 for quantities of 10,000 units.

About Ramtron
Ramtron International Corporation, headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, is a fabless semiconductor company that designs, develops and markets specialized semiconductor memory and integrated semiconductor solutions used in a wide range of product applications and markets worldwide.