Apacer’s Industrial Wide-Temperature 3D NAND Products Offer Enticing New Opportunities for the Industrial Storage Market

The industrial device market is booming, as 5G, Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI) and edge computing are all expanding rapidly. All of these technologies require more and more storage space for their data. Moving from 2D SLC or MLC to 3D TLC is similar to changing building patterns from standard homes to high-rise buildings. The vertical construction of 3D NAND technology overcomes the interference caused by the close distances between memory cells found in the 2D NAND process. This offers superior capacity and reliability while also lowering power consumption.

However, 3D NAND also has challenges such as quality, P/E cycles and temperature. To this end, Apacer continues to use Toshiba ICs, which offer an impressive total number of P/E cycles (3,000) and support operation at temperatures between -40° and 85°C. In addition, Apacer has developed a variety of firmware designs and value-adding technologies that are expected to extend the operation lifetime of 3D NAND solutions.

Over-provisioning (OP) Technology Upgrades 3D NAND Performance and Durability

Apacer leverages Over-provisioning (OP) technology to provide better endurance and random performance for its latest 3D NAND SSD solutions. When comparing devices supporting OP to devices that do not, the Write Amplification Indicator (WAI), the number of read/write operations per second (IOPS), and the Garbage Collection (GC) are all useful benchmarks.

In terms of WAI indicators, the adoption of OP in a 128GB product can reduce WAI from 1.68 to 1.47, while WAI for 256GB products using OP is further reduced by 25%. As for the IOPS testing conditions, the SSD is first written for about 500 minutes until it reaches capacity, and then the rigorous testing period begins. An SSD with OP in these conditions can reach an average IOPS speed of 3,700, while one without OP will be closer to 2,000. And a GC test found that an SSD with OP has a background processing efficiency about 65% better than that of an SSD without it.

LDPC ECC Engine Checks SSD Security

The function of the error correction code (ECC) engine helps to ensure that incorrect data is not written to NAND Flash during reading and writing, making data storage more reliable. Compared to 2D SLC and MLC which use BCH ECC engines to achieve 72-bit ECC rates in 1KB, Apacer’s 3D TLC implementation of a low-density parity checking code (LDPC) ECC engine can achieve more than 120 bits of error-correcting capability.

In addition to the higher error-correcting capability, Apacer’s LDPC ECC engine functions in three distinct levels to further prevent data errors. A complete LDPC ECC process includes both LDPC hard-coding and soft-coding. If both these levels of protection fail, data is still protected by DataRAID™ technology. DataRAID™ technology automatically generates a parity file that will be present alongside the data. This can be used to correct and restore error data that cannot be corrected by hard-coding or soft-coding, adding an additional level of protection.

Apacer’s Double-barreled Solution

In order to maximize the practical operating lifespan of 3D NAND SSDs, Apacer has developed a Double-barreled Solution. The first phase is the CoreAnalyzer2 firmware and software package, and the second phase is the SSDWidget2.0 smart monitoring software. Together, these technologies allow customers to select the ideal SSD for their needs and monitor it as it operates.

By taking full advantage of Apacer’s CoreAnalyzer2, customers can easily discover the SSD which is most suitable for their needs. CoreAnalyzer2 can also recommend customized SSD firmware when necessary. CoreAnalyzer2 collects usage and operational data while still maintaining customer privacy, never analyzing what data is recorded but simply the time and conditions under which it was recorded. Apacer’s professional technical team use this data to produce a usage analysis, and make suggestions based on this report.

Once an SSD is chosen and deployed, customers can monitor its operation in the real world using the second part of the Double-barreled Solution – SSDWidget2.0. This software can be incorporated into the customer’s private server to allow engineers to monitor the status of SSDs in real-time, anticipating the end of an SSD’s operational life and replacing it before it fails to ensure data integrity. This will improve data reliability and, in many cases, reduce manpower and maintenance costs.

For the rapidly growing industrial control field, Apacer’s industrial-grade 3D NAND storage solutions and value-adding technologies are indispensable. Whether it’s for IoT, networking, transportation, defense, healthcare or gaming, an Apacer SSD will offer the best balance of reliability, efficiency and low power consumption. The opportunities are practically limitless.