PDL Abstract

Phase Change Technology and the Future of Main Memory

IEEE Micro, Special Issue: Micro's Top Picks from 2009 Computer Architecture Conferences (MICRO TOP PICKS), Vol. 30, No. 1, pages 60-70, January/February 2010.

Benjamin C. Lee1, Ping Zhou4, Jun Yang4, Youtao Zhang4, Bo Zhao, Engin Ipek2, Onur Mutlu,
Doug Burger3

Electrical & Computer Engineering
Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

1 Stanford University
2 University of Rochester
3 Microsoft Research
4 University of Pittsburgh


Phase-change memory may enable continued scaling of main memories, but PCM has higher access latencies, incurs higher power costs, and wears out more quickly than dram. This article discusses how to mitigate these limitations through buffer sizing, row caching, write reduction, and wear leveling, to make PCM a viable DRAM alternative for scalable main memories.