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Design guide

Flash memory chips for your embedded design

The flash memory has become vital chip on your embedded board. It stores all the code you have written for the MCU to perform. While selecting flash memory IC, you may have to look for type, memory size, package, speed, temperature range, and cost.
Memory Type: The two most popular types in the market are NOR flash and NAND flash. The NOR flash's advantage is it's access speed and ability to rewrite the content faster. These characteristics of NOR makes it highly suitable for storing source code. The drawback of NOR is it's limited size and cost. So if you have huge data to store along with code, better use NAND flash for storing data. The NAND is slower(byte wise access)than NOR but can store huge quantity of data in small size. The NAND costs cheaper than NOR. However NAND doesn't suit for storing source code, since source code need faster access time. Here in this article we are providing list of NOR flash memories.

Memory Size: If your code can fit within 1MB of flash, than you may not need external flash memory at all because some of the latest microcontrollers have up to 1MB built-in flash. You can choose memory sizes of 2MB- to 512MB of NOR flash devices. For small sized flash (1MB-8MB) go for SST and Macronix and for larger size (>8MB) go for Spansion and Intel.

Package: The most common packages are TSOP and BGA. The other packages are SSOP, SOIC, LGA, CSP, AL42, and PLCC

Cost: Intel, AMD, and ST Micro prices are higher than Taiwanese vendors Macronix and SST. Atmel chips too are lower priced.

Hi-rel applications: ST Micro flash chips have more option for you to select in the Automotive and Mil/Aerospace range.

Here below in the table, we have listed a few selected NOR flash memories available from popular flash vendors around the world.

Vendor Part No. Vendor's Technology Name Memory size in MB Access time in nano secs Serial Cost Package Temp Range
Spansion S29AL032D floating gate 32 70 No High TSOP, BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
Spansion S29CD-J floating gate 16-32 50 No High BGA, PQFP -40 to 125 Deg C
Spansion Am29BL162C floating gate 16 65 No High SSOP -55 to 125 Deg C
Spansion S29PL127N Mirror bit 128 60 No High BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
Intel J3 series Embedded Flash 128 75 No High TSOP, BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
Intel C3 Series Advanced boot block flash 32 70 No High TSOP, BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
Intel S33 Series Serial Flash 64 N/A Yes High SOIC -40 to 85 Deg C
Intel P30/P33 Series Strata-Flash 64-512 85 No High TSOP, BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
SST SST39WF1601/2 Multi Purpose Flash plus (MPF+) 16 90 No Medium BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
SST SST39VF6401/02B Multi Purpose Flash plus (MPF+) 64 70 No Medium TSOP, BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
SST SST39WF800B Multi Purpose Flash(MPF) 8 70 No Medium BGA, LGA -40 to 85 Deg C
SST SST39WF400A Multi Purpose Flash(MPF) 4 90 No Medium BGA, LGA -40 to 85 Deg C
SST

SST39LF200/

400/800A

Multi Purpose Flash(MPF) 2-8 45 No Medium TSOP, BGA, LGA -40 to 85 Deg C
Macronix

MX29LV002C/

002NC T/B

Industry-Standard Flash 2 70 No Medium SOP, TSOP -40 to 85 Deg C
Macronix MX29LV400C T/B Industry-Standard Flash 4 55 No Medium CSP, SOP, TSOP -40 to 85 Deg C
Macronix MX29LV800C T/B Industry-Standard Flash 8 45 No Medium CSP, SOP, TSOP -40 to 85 Deg C
Macronix MX29LV160C T/B Industry-Standard Flash 16 55 No Medium CSP, SOP, TSOP -40 to 85 Deg C
Macronix MX29LV320C T/B Industry-Standard Flash 32 70 No Medium CSP, SOP, TSOP -40 to 85 Deg C
Macronix MX29LV640D T/B Industry-Standard Flash 64 90 No Medium CSP, SOP, TSOP -40 to 85 Deg C
ST Microelectronics M28W series Industry Standard, Boot Block 3V, M28W [8] 16-64 70 No High TSOP, BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
ST Microelectronics M29DW Multiple Bank 3V, M29DW [5] 64-128 60 No High TSOP, BGA -40 to 85 Deg C
ST Microelectronics M29F Industry Standard, 5V, M29F [12] 1-32 55 No High SOIC, TSOP, AL42, PLCC -40 to 125 Deg C
ST Microelectronics M29W Industry Standard, 3V, M29W [26] 1-128 45 No High TSOP, BGA, AL42, PLCC -40 to 125 Deg C
Atmel AT49BV322D 2.7V, x8/x16, or x16, Large Sectored Flash 32 70 No Medium TSOP, BGA -40 to 85 Deg C

For detailed specs please visit vendor's website or contact us for full detailed analysis report

Vendor URL
Spansion (Joint venture of AMD and Fujitsu) www.spansion.com
Intel www.intel.com
SST (Silicon Storage Technology) www.sst.com
Macronix www.macronix.com
ST Microelectronics www.st.com
Atmel www.atmel.com

 

Are you looking for alternate to FLASH MEMORY chips as your non volatile memory click the below article:

No-volatile Flash Memory alternatives: FRAM, PRAM and MRAM

To learn how to interface flash memory IC chips to a microcontroller or a processor in a embedded system design click the below article.

Flash memory basics and its interface to a processor


 

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