Rambus today unveiled an architectural breakthrough of applying micro-threading to DRAM cores. This innovation significantly increases memory subsystem efficiency, resulting in up to four times greater performance when compared to a traditional DRAM in applications such as 3D graphics, advanced video imaging, and network routing and switching. A Rambus analysis showed that a standard GDDR SDRAM being used in a 3D application can deliver between 50 and 125 million triangles per second. If the same GDDR SDRAM were to be enhanced with micro-threading, the rate of delivered triangles would increase to between 100 and 500 million triangles per second. By enabling higher triangle rendering rates, micro-threading, as it is applied to a DRAM core, benefits the end user experience by providing richer visuals.

Rambus Inc., one of the world’s premier technology licensing companies
specializing in high-speed chip interfaces, today unveiled an architectural
breakthrough of applying micro-threading to DRAM cores. This innovation
significantly increases memory subsystem efficiency, resulting in up to four
times greater performance when compared to a traditional DRAM in applications
such as 3D graphics, advanced video imaging, and network routing and switching.

Micro-threading increases memory system efficiency by enabling DRAMs to
provide more usable data bandwidth to requesting memory controllers. A single
core operation of a typical mainstream DRAM provides a larger amount of data
than needed by many applications. As a result, large amounts of memory bandwidth
are used to deliver a small amount of relevant data. Micro-threading enables the
DRAM to provide several smaller relevant pieces of data in place of a single
larger piece of data, resulting in higher memory bandwidth efficiency while
minimizing power consumption.

"By applying micro-threading to a DRAM core, we are continuing our tradition
of innovation by designing and developing advanced technologies to improve the
bandwidth between DRAMs and their associated memory controllers," said Laura
Stark, vice president of Platform Solutions at Rambus. "We look forward to
working with our various DRAM partners to bring this exciting new technology to
the market in high-volume applications."

With the application of micro-threading to a DRAM core, separate addresses
are provided to different DRAM core partitions, enabling the requesting
controller to generate multiple micro-RAS and micro-CAS operations in the same
time it would take to generate a single RAS or CAS command to a standard DRAM.
Simultaneously accessible banks allow for concurrent retrieval of data, which
are then bundled into a single transmission.

Realistic interactive 3D applications such as games and visualization
software require more complex scenes, composed of increasingly smaller textured
polygons or triangles. A Rambus analysis showed that a standard GDDR SDRAM being
used in a 3D application can deliver between 50 and 125 million triangles per
second. If the same GDDR SDRAM were to be enhanced with micro-threading, the
rate of delivered triangles would increase to between 100 and 500 million
triangles per second. By enabling higher triangle rendering rates,
micro-threading, as it is applied to a DRAM core, benefits the end user
experience by providing richer visuals.

Micro-threading may be applied to existing DRAM cores with relatively low
incremental cost. To benefit from the performance increase, DRAM controllers
interfacing with micro-threaded DRAMs need to be optimized for the new
technology. This patent pending micro-threading technology is available for
licensing today. For more information on micro-threading and other Rambus
innovations, please visit www.rambus.com