Samsung Electronics has announced the High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) -2, the Aquabolt and claims that it has the highest DRAM performance levels, for use in next-generation supercomputers, artificial intelligence and graphics systems.
Mass production has start for the second generation, 8Gbyte HBM. The Aquabolt is claimed to have the fastest data transmission speed on the market today, delivering 2.4Gbit per second data transfer speed per pin. This, says Samsung, should
Samsung’s Aquabolt 8Gbyte HBM-2 is also claimed to deliver the highest level of DRAM performance, at 2.4Gbit per second pin speed at 1.2V, which translates into a performance upgrade of nearly 50 per cent per package, compared to the company’s 1st-generation 8Gbyte HBM-2 package with its 1.6Gbit per second pin speed at 1.2V and 2.0Gbit per second at 1.35V.
As a result, a single Samsung 8Gbyte HBM-2 package will offer a 307Gbyte per second data bandwidth, achieving 9.6 times faster data transmission than an 8Gbit GDDR5 chip, which provides a 32Gbyte per second data bandwidth. Using four of the new HBM-2 packages in a system will enable a 1.2Tbyte per second bandwidth., which will improve overall system performance by as much as 50 per cent, compared to a system that uses a 1.6Gbit per second HBM-2, says Samsung.
Samsung has applied new technologies related to through silicon via (TSV) design and thermal control for Aquabolt. A single 8GbByte HBM-2 package consists of eight 8Gbit HBM-2 dies, which are vertically interconnected using over 5,000 TSVs per die. While using so many TSVs can cause collateral clock skew, Samsung reports that it has minimised the skew to a modest level and “significantly enhanced chip performance in the process”.
An increase in the number of thermal bumps between the HBM-2 dies enables stronger thermal control in each package. The new HBM2 includes an additional protective layer at the bottom, which increases the package’s overall physical strength.