Power cycling test technology

Paul Boughton

Memory manufacturer ATP has announced the latest release of its new testing technology—the ATP Power Cycling Test. This new test further validates the industrially renowned design of the ATP PowerProtector, available in the flash product lines. The ATP Power Cycling Test demonstrates the functionality of the product with ATP PowerProtector under sudden power-downs situations.

At the beginning of each cycle, the ATP power cycling test first writes a segment of the data pattern into a testing device and waits for the exact 'microsecond' to cut off power during the programing data into NAND blocks.

The ATP power cycling test creates a sudden power failure at the precise moment of the 'write' command stage of the flash device. During certain power cycles, a product without the PowerProtector feature can result in data corruption at this stage and shows a 'Fail'. This is due to data mis-comparison in the post test check conducted after each power cycle. On the contrary, a product with ATP PowerProtector would show a “Pass” after thousands of power cycles without any data loss. The apparent different testing results validate the effectiveness of the PowerProtector feature of the NAND flash product.

ATP PowerProtector Technology guarantees reliable controller and lasting NAND flash operation with a backup power circuit during a power outage. The standalone design of PowerProtector ensures a sufficient amount of backup power during any power abnormalities such as unstable voltages, and power outages during each command of the flash drive. During a power failure, PowerProtector activates and the flash drive is able to draw reserve power from PowerProtector’s solid state capacitors. This allows the drive to finish the last 'program' and 'erase commands', a critical feature which protect the pages(s) or block(s) in mid transaction.in addition to the controller link table.

ATP PowerProtector technology highlights the critical requirement for reliable flash operations in high performance mission critical applications such as transportation, telecommunications, networking and embedded systems. PowerProtector is a stranger alternative to both battery and SuperCap solutions for backup power.

Unlike SuperCap, the ATP PowerProtector offers a standalone hardware design that does not require specific controllers or customised firmware. The ATP PowerProtector requires a leaner board footprint and is available in smaller form factors such as CF cards, SlimSATA, SATA embedded modules, eUSB, mSATA, PATA, CFast, and SSDs. Battery based solutions are not cost effective with short life spans and high costs of replacement. The hardware based design of PowerProtector with longer lifespan, support of wide temperature ranges, and low risk exceeds the performance and reliability of SuperCap based solutions.

For more information, visit www.atpinc.com>