Data Storage Using Nano-Technology and Electronics

Topics: Flash memory, Computer data storage, Data storage device Pages: 17 (5235 words) Published: January 3, 2009
“Data storage using Nanotechnology and Electronics”
Authors: A. Aparna and S. Krishna Prasad
II year ECE, Gokaraju RangaRaju Institute of Engineering and Technology, Kukatpally, Hyderabad. Contact: Ph 09701540082- Krishna Prasad


Electronics and nanotechnology working together would yield a holistic solution to data storage problems that are encountered with conventional techniques. This paper aims at familiarizing the reader about some of the available and emerging data storage technologies which are direct consequences of advancement of nanotechnology. The applications along with their concepts covered in the paper are 1. EEPROM

2. Flash Memory
3. FerroElecric RAM- dubbed as FeRAM
5. Conductive Bridging RAM- CBRAM
8. RaceTrack memory
10. Twin-Transistor RAM-TTRAM
11. ZRAM
12. Memristor

Besides explaining the technique of data storage in each of the above mentioned applications, this paper also gives an appreciable comparison between existing technologies and emerging technologies.

A data storage device is a device for recording information. Electronic data storage is storage which requires electrical power to store and retrieve data. Most electronic data storage devices are volatile in nature for the data stored vanishes if it is devoid of power although efforts are under way to create permanent (non-volatile) data storage using electronic applications.

Trends in data storage:

International Data Corporation estimated that the total amount of digital data was 281 billion gigabytes in 2007, and had for the first time exceeded the amount of storage.

Before moving any further in understanding emerging trends in electronic storage, we here briefly describe an EEPROM and then comprehensively cover a few advanced non-volatile data storage devices.


EEPROM stands for electrically erasable and programmable read only memory. It is a type of non-volatile memory used in computers and other electronic devices to store small amounts of data that must be saved when power is removed.

EEPROMs are realized as arrays of floating-gate transistors. An EEPROM typically consists of grid of rows and columns with cells, each consisting of a MOSFET.

Programming a memory cell is done by a process called as hot electron injection while erasing a part of the memory is done by quantum tunneling whose applicartion is limited owing to time constraint.



A USB Flash drive is a NAND- type flash memory data storage device integrated with a universal serial bus(USB) interface. Flash is based on the floating gate concept, essentially a modified transistor. USB flash drives are typically removable and rewritable, much shorter than a floppy disk (1 to 4 inches or 2.5 to 10 cm), and weigh less than 2 ounces (60 g). Storage capacities typically range from 64 MB to 64 GB with steady improvements in size and price per gigabyte. Some allow 1 million write or erase cycles and have 10-year data retention, connected by USB 1.1 or USB 2.0.

Design and implementation:

A flash drive consists of a small printed circuit board protected inside a plastic, metal, or rubberised case.

1 USB connector
2 USB mass storage controller device
3 Test points
4 Flash memory chip
5 Crystal oscillator
7 Write-protect switch
8 Space for second flash memory chip

Mounted on this board is some simple power circuitry and a small number of surface-mounted integrated circuits (ICs). Typically, one of these ICs provides an interface to the USB port, another drives the onboard memory, and the other is the flash memory.

Description of components:

-USB connector —...

References: :
[1] Integrated Electronics- Jacob Millman and Christos C Halkias
[2] Electronics For You- july 2008, August 2008
[5] Electronic principles-Albert Malvino and David J Bates
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