Samsung's new DDR5 is the first to use HKMG technology, here's why that's a big deal

Samsung Memory
Samsung Memory (Image credit: Samsung)

What you need to know

  • Samsung announced a 512GB DDR5 module that utilizes HKMG technology.
  • It is the first DDR5 module to utilize the HKMG process.
  • The memory module should reach 7,200 Mbps, which is double that of DDR4.

Samsung announced a new 512GB DDR5 module that utilizes High-K Metal Gate (HKMG) technology. The memory module is the first of its kind, according to Samsung, and it delivers up to 7,200Mbps. The increased speeds should be able to handle the most demanding workloads, including supercomputing, AI, and machine learning. It should be a massive boost compared to the best DDR4 RAM that's available now.

This isn't the first DDR5 module, but it is the first to utilize HKMG technology. The technology is used in logic semiconductors. As DRAM structures have been scaled down, insulation layers get thinner, which leads to a higher leakage current. The new DDR5 module replaces the insulator with HKMG material. According to Samsung, this will reduce leakage and improve performance. On top of that, it will use approximately 13% less power, according to Samsung.

Soo Sohn, vice president of the DRAM Memory Planning/Enabling Group at Samsung Electronics, explains the benefits of using HKMG tech:

By bringing this type of process innovation to DRAM manufacturing, we are able to offer our customers high-performance, yet energy-efficient memory solutions to power the computers needed for medical research, financial markets, autonomous driving, smart cities, and beyond.

Samsung started using the HKMG process with its GDDR6 memory in 2018.

The new DDR5 module from Samsung stacks eight layers of 16GB DRAM chips to reach its 512GB capacity. It leverages through-silicon via (TSV) technology.

TechRadar reports that Samsung's HKMG-based 512GB DDR5 memory will likely arrive in the latter half of 2021. It is currently in its verification stage.

Sean Endicott
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Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at