Impact of Process Variation on Endurance Algorithms for Wear-Prone Memories

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Executive Summary

Non-volatile memories, such as Flash and Phase-Change Memory, are replacing other memory and storage technologies. Although these new technologies have desirable energy and scalability properties, they are prone to wear-out due to excessive write operations. Because wear-out is an important phenomenon, a number of endurance management schemes have been proposed. There is a trade-off between what techniques to use, depending on the range of bit cell lifetime within a device. This range in cell durability arises from effects due to process variation. In this paper, the authors describe modeling techniques to analyze trade-offs for endurance management based on the anticipated distribution of cell lifetime.

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