vege - Fotolia
It seems likely triple-level cell (TLC) flash will begin making its way into enterprise environments in late 2015 or 2016.
TLC flash is designed to overcome the flash storage issue of capacity. Most flash drives are currently based on multi-level cell flash, which allows each cell to store two bits of data. The problem is that a finite number of cells can be physically placed into a die. If a flash manufacturer wants to increase capacity, it has three options:
- Increase the physical size of the die
- Shrink the size of the cell
- Adopt a new cell architecture
Increasing the size of the die and decreasing the size of the cell both have issues. Flash memory cells eventually wear out as a result of undergoing too many write operations. Larger cells are more durable than smaller ones, and are therefore able to sustain a greater number of writes. Also, the number of electrons that can exist within a cell decreases as the cell shrinks. There eventually comes a point when a cell's small size translates directly to less reliability due to factors such as electron leakage (electrons jumping from cell to cell).
So, flash manufacturers are moving toward the only other option: a new cell architecture. TLC cells will increase flash capacity by adding a bit of storage to each cell. It is only a matter of time before TLC becomes widely adopted for enterprise storage.
But even TLC flash has its limits when it comes to storage capacity. TLC flash may eventually be overtaken by 3-D NAND flash, which seeks to increase capacity by adding vertical layers to the die.
TLC flash emerges as lower-cost alternative to SSDs
NAND flash successors come to prominence
MLC, eMLC, SLC and TLC flash storage basics
Dig Deeper on Solid-state storage
Related Q&A from Brien Posey
Hyper-converged systems, like any other, require data protection. We describe using RAID and erasure coding for hyper-convergence to help you pick ... Continue Reading
Organizations that need to protect resources in the public cloud have a number of backup possibilities, some with more hazardous negatives than ... Continue Reading
There may be value in including artificial intelligence in backup software. Find out which vendors are already using AI to improve backup and data ... Continue Reading
Have a question for an expert?
Please add a title for your question
Get answers from a TechTarget expert on whatever's puzzling you.