Atmel Ships World's Fastest Serial Interface Flash Memory

5/6/2003 - Atmel® Corporation (Nasdaq: ATML) announced that it has started shipping their 128-Megabit (Mbit) AT45DB1282 DataFlash® device. The 2.7V sequential access AT45DB1282 features two interfaces: an SPI compatible 40MHz RapidSTM serial interface with a read throughput of 5Mbytes/second, and a 20MHz Rapid8TM 8-bit synchronous interface with a read throughput of 20Mbytes per second with no page to page latencies. The AT45DB1282 represents a major step in Flash memory innovation offering the design engineer significantly more flexibility and performance than the other high-density Flash memory solutions currently available. This 128-Mbit device is the world's fastest serial interface flash memory, the simple 4-pin serial interface greatly simplifies system design, reduces pin-count, power consumption and switching noise. System designers can use either interface, or both to best support their end system requirements. This device has been designed to enable advanced features and functionality in a variety of high volume products and reduce total system cost. Applications benefiting from this architecture include; mobile phone handsets, Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs), digital still cameras, laser printers, set-top boxes, network switches and routers, telematics, point of sale terminals, car navigation and mapping products, industrial controls, medical and security systems as well as a full range of wireless products.

This device is first in a series of high-density, high-performance and low cost DataFlash memories manufactured using Atmel's e-STACTM Multi-Level Cell (MLC) memory technology, which allows a single cell to store two bits of information. The combination of the DataFlash architecture, very small page size (1,056-Bytes for both program and erase), on board SRAM buffers which allow for self contained rewriting to the flash memory array, low pin count interfaces and the e-STAC memory technology allows for a very flexible and low cost system solution. "The power of the DataFlash architecture lies in its versatility. Most design engineers are combining both the data memory and code memory into a single device. The serial EEPROM is also being incorporated into the DataFlash, as byte alterability is a breeze using the on board RAM," states Dirk Franklin Product Marketing Director for DataFlash.

The low pin-count RapidS and Rapid8 interfaces can easily connect to the system processor or controller directly or with a single command burst information from the DataFlash into a "shadow" SDRAM or SRAM usually present in the target applications, at power-up, and execute programs from there. The benefits of code shadowing from DataFlash are many, beginning with a very low pincount interface, low read currents of 10 to 12mA typical and the code image can be stored in a compressed state to reduce the total flash requirement. Using the Continuous Array Read command the entire device (132-Mbits) can be read out in less than 0.9 seconds.

This latest member of Atmel's DataFlash family includes new features to ease system design. A 128-Byte security register has been added for end product security uses. This register has a 64-Byte user programmable space and a unique 64-Byte device indentifier. The AT45DB1282 also supports the Atmel sponsored and recently approved JEDEC standard on manufacturer and device identification for serial flash memories.

"The introduction of this product reflects Atmel's strategy to address the emerging trend in end product design to use a single device for storage of both program and data. Implementing designs with a single NVM device results in smaller footprint end products that have a lower cost structure, and are more competitive in the marketplace." continued Franklin. "This represents a major step forward in providing the lowest cost solution that can replace both sequential access NAND Flash and traditional parallel flash, and save pin count on the processor or ASIC, simplified board routing, reduce power, switching noise and footprint in the end application."

The DataFlash family of devices range from 1-Mbit to 128-Mbit and deliver reliable solutions to store both embedded program code and data in a low pin-count small footprint package, for the lowest total system cost. For the end consumer, high density DataFlash memory allows for more advanced features such as richer color screens, multiple language options, messaging, pictures, Internet access on mobile phones. For telecommunications users it enables the design of smarter, faster routers and more efficient switches in networking applications.

Production volumes of the 128 Mbit device are available now in 44Ball 8mm x 12mm CBGA or a 40-pin TSOP type-1. Priced competitively currently at $10.50 per 100,000 units, the AT45DB1282 is projected to drop to about half that price or less as the technology matures.

The DataFlash Software Suite (DFSSTM) supports all densities of DataFlash with a flash file system, ECC, wear leveling and compression/ decompression routines is a valuable tool in getting designs to market quickly. VHDL and Verilog models are available for the entire DataFlash product line from Denali Software. Programming support is available from the major players including, Data I/O, BP Microsystems, System General and Needhams.

About Atmel
Founded in 1984, Atmel Corporation is headquartered in San Jose, California with manufacturing facilities in North America and Europe. Atmel designs, manufactures and markets worldwide, advanced logic, mixed-signal, nonvolatile memory and RF semiconductors. Atmel is also a leading provider of system-level integration semiconductor solutions using CMOS, BiCMOS, SiGe, and high-voltage BCDMOS process technologies.

Atmel, the Atmel logo, DataFlash, and combinations thereof are registered trademarks and RapidS, Rapid8 , DFSS and e-stack are trademarks of Atmel Corporation or its subsidiaries.

For more information on Atmel's DataFlash products, go to Further information on Atmelís products can be retrieved at

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