Samsung announced yesterday that it has begun shipping of its new 15.36 TB SSD, the “PM1633a”. The drives utilize a technology called 3D NAND. 3D NAND is a revolutionary technology that is helping improve storage density and pricing of SSDs, making them increasingly competitive with Hard Drives. Multiple layers of cells are stacked on top of each other in the die, to achieve a high level of storage density. The drive uses multiple 256 Gb(Gigabit) dies for storage, and contains a massive 16 GB of DRAM in its controller as a form of cache for managing the data and operations. 16 of these 256 Gb dies are stacked to create a 512 GB package(There are 8 bits in a byte). The drive is made up of 32 of these packages. The PM1633a provides random read speeds of up to 200,000 IOPS(Input/Output Operations Per Second), and random write speeds of up to 32,000 IOPS. The speed in data throughput is up to 1200 MB/S.
The drive is mainly for enterprise usage, as it uses Serial-Attached SCSI as its interface, rather than SATA or PCIe. The drive can withstand writing to the entire capacity of the drive once a day, for up to 5 years. This means that the entire capacity can be written over 1800 times before it loses its ability to write. Samsung states this is 2-10 times the amount of writes provided by most SATA-based SSDs. With SSD’s we’ve seen that they can last much longer than they’re rated for, so its possible that this drive could last for 3000+ full writes, it just isn’t guaranteed. Unfortunately we are unlikely to see that benchmarked, as this drive will not be cheap. Pricing has not been announced, however given its incredibly fast read speeds, and high longevity, the device will probably cost more per GB than consumer SSD’s.
Samsung will also offer a variety of drives within the PM1633a family with varying capacities, ranging from as small as 480 GB, to this monsterous 15.36 TB drive.