Researchers at from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki have purportedly created the fastest RAM in the world, which stores light instead of electricity, solving a long-standing computer problem, also known as the “Memory Wall”.
It is reported that they managed to achieve speeds double of those in the current fastest memories manufactured by world-renowned companies such as Intel and IBM!
Postdoctoral researcher Christos Vagionis who is part of the 5-member Research Group on Wireless and Photonic Systems (ERAFOS) that created the RAM memory after a 10-year-long effort, in the age of “cloud storage” and Large Data, which requires fast remote data processing, this solution is currently proposed for supercomputers. The University’s researchers replaced the electronic memory with a corresponding Random Access RAM optic memory that supports 10Gb / s read and write speeds (10 billion bits per second).
Originally theorized in 1994 by Wulf and McKee, the concept of the “Memory Wall” revolves around the idea that computer processing units (CPUs) are advancing at a fast enough pace that will leave memory (RAM) stagnant. This isn’t going to happen immediately, but assuming current trends in CPU and RAM remain the same, we could hit a memory wall sometime in the near future.
He added that it was too early to estimate if this breakthrough would be a financially worthwhile endevour in the market, as it usually took at least a decade before technologies used in supercomputers reach home PCs
Remarking on why he believed R&D departments of tech giants completely overlooked this path and its possibilities, Mr Vagionis said that they were usually focused on purely electronic solutions based on transistors (semiconductor devices), trends and currents to achieve fast processing, solutions which presented limitations that came with electronic technologies.
The use of optical technologies in computers is recent, he stressed. “Other Universities had developed solutions, but they are simpler, that is, they are not a complete RAM. We have developed a complete solution, basically we have posted a one-bit RAM standard that has the ability to perform all functions”, he noted.
As for the next steps, Mr Vagionis said the team planned to develop multiple memory bits over the course of the next three years and showcase their operational capacities while working on the rapid data transfer to routers and network switches.