May 24, 2005 – IBM, Infineon, and Macronix have announced a joint research initiative to explore the potential of a new form of computer memory technology called phase-change memory (PCM), which stores data by changing the state of a special material from an amorphous to a crystalline structure, rather than storing data as an electrical charge.
While in its early stages, PCM technology shows potential for high-speed, high-density storage of data, and the ability to retain it when the power is off.
The research work will be conducted at IBM’s T.J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, NY, and the IBM Almaden Research Lab in San Jose, CA. Approximately 20-25 employees from across the three companies will be dedicated to this project.
The initiative combines IBM’s strengths in the research of fundamental materials and physics research, Infineon’s competence in the research, development, and high volume manufacturing of various memory technologies and product types, and Macronix’s experience in nonvolatile memory technologies.
“The project will aim to develop the materials for high performance, advanced nonvolatile memory and evaluate these materials in realistic memory chip demonstrations,” said T.C. Chen, VP of science and technology at IBM Research.