Georgia Institute of Technology
DRAMs require periodic refresh for preserving data stored in them. The refresh interval for DRAMs depends on the vendor and the design technology they use. For each refresh in a DRAM row, the stored information in each cell is read out and then written back to itself as each DRAM bit read is self-destructive. The refresh process is inevitable for maintaining data correctness, unfortunately, at the expense of power and bandwidth overhead. The future trend to integrate layers of 3D die-stacked DRAMs on top of a processor further exacerbates the situation as accesses to these DRAMs will be more frequent and hiding refresh cycles in the available slack becomes increasingly difficult.