FRAM (ferroelectric RAM)

FRAM (ferroelectric RAM) is random access memory that combines the fast read and write access of dynamic RAM (DRAM) - the most common kind of personal computer memory - with the ability to retain data when power is turned off (as do other non-volatile memory devices such as ROM and flash memory).

FRAM (ferroelectric RAM) is random access memory that combines the fast read and write access of dynamic RAM (DRAM) - the most common kind of personal computer memory - with the ability to retain data when power is turned off (as do other non-volatile memory devices such as ROM and flash memory). Because FRAM is not as dense (can not store as much data in the same space) as DRAM and SRAM, it is not likely replace these technologies. However, because it is fast memory with a very low power requirement, it is expected to have many applications in small consumer devices such as personal digital assistants (PDAs), handheld phones, power meters, and smart card, and in security systems. FRAM is faster than flash memory. It is also expected to replace EEPROM and SRAM for some applications and to become a key component in future wireless products.

In spite of its name, ferroelectric RAM does not contain iron. Today's FRAM uses lead zirconate titanate (PZT); other materials are being considered. The main developer of FRAM is Ramtron International.

This was first published in April 2005

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