Design Methodologies for Reliable and Energy-efficient PCM Systems

Shihao Song, Anup Das

Phase-change memory (PCM) is a scalable and low latency non-volatile memory (NVM) technology that has been proposed to serve as storage class memory (SCM), providing low access latency similar to DRAM and often approaching or exceeding the capacity of SSD. The multilevel property of PCM also enables its adoption in neuromorphic systems to build high-density synaptic storage. We investigate and describe two significant bottlenecks of a PCM system. First, writing to PCM cells incurs significantly higher latency and energy penalties than reading its content. Second, high operating voltages of PCM impacts its reliable operations. In this work, we propose methodologies to tackle the bottlenecks, improving performance, reliability, energy consumption, and sustainability for a PCM system.

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