SanDisk: We’ll ship 43nm NAND in 2Q08

Feb. 7, 2008 – SanDisk says it will start shipping 16Gb multilevel NAND flash memory products built with 43nm process technologies during 2Q08, with 32Gb versions slated for later in the year. Manufacturing of the newer process node is underway at Toshiba’s Yokkaichi operations near Nagoya, Japan, produced initially at Fab 4, followed by Fab 3 sometime in 2H08.

“We’re excited about commencing the production ramp of the 43nm generation of MLC NAND flash memory with its significantly lower cost benefits,” said Randhir Thakur, EVP of technology and worldwide operations, in a statement. “The 43nm technology generation will become our major focus during 2008.”

The technology features the company’s “all bit line” architecture, with “efficient” programming algorithms and 8KB page size. Manufacturing includes high-k/metal gates, and 1.3NA immersion lithography. The ramp schedule for Fab 4 was recently accelerated to 80,000 wafers/month in 2008 and 210,000 in 2009, a 40% increase over the original plan, according to SanDisk chairman and CEO Eli Harari, as reported by Nikkei Microdevices.

SanDisk also stated that it expects to combine its 43nm NAND flash with other systems and proprietary controllers to target other markets such as solid-state drives and “managed NAND” (e.g., iNAND), “to expand the flash storage capabilities of the rapidly growing mobile market.”

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