Startup secures Best of Show Memory Technology Award

11th August 2023
Paige West

Quinas Technology, the spinoff originating from Lancaster University with the aim of bringing ULTRARAM memory to the commercial market, has been honoured with the Best of Show award in the category of Most Innovative Flash Memory Startup at the Flash Memory Summit.

Conceived by Professor Manus Hayne from Lancaster University's Physics Department, ULTRARAM merges the dynamic random-access memory (DRAM)'s performance with the non-volatility of flash, an achievement once deemed improbable. Defying expectations, it possesses the capacity to retain data for over 1,000 years, surpassing the potential of flash memory. Moreover, ULTRARAM facilitates rapid reading and writing while consuming lower energy compared to DRAM.

Similar to a compound semiconductor iteration of flash memory, ULTRARAM capitalises on the quantum-mechanical phenomenon of resonant tunnelling. It replaces the oxide tunnel barrier present in conventional flash memory with a triple-barrier resonant tunnelling configuration. This innovation addresses the shortcomings of traditional flash memory, enabling a floating-gate memory to function at both low voltage and high speed. This approach also offers exceptional endurance and efficiency while retaining the crucial trait of non-volatility.

Quinas Technology's primary commercial goal is to advance the technology to a point where it surpasses the performance of dynamic random-access memory (DRAM), which serves as the operational memory in digital electronics and computing. An additional substantial benefit lies in its inherent non-volatility.

“New forms of memory tiering technology can potentially create compelling value for customer workloads in the future,” said Jay Kramer, Chair of the Awards Programme and President of Network Storage Advisors Inc. “We are proud to recognise Quinas Technology for inventing a new type of computer memory which combines speed, endurance, retention and energy efficiency into a single memory concept.”

James Ashforth-Pook, CEO of Quinas Technology said: “Quinas is delighted to have been honoured with this award by Flash Memory Summit. It is particularly gratifying to have this endorsement from the world’s leading memory conference, given the highly disruptive use of compound semiconductors in ULTRARAM.”

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