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ULTRARAM™ universal computer memory to be commercialised

Daniel Nenni

Staff member
Lancaster University is to create a spinout company to commercialise the universal
computer memory technology ULTRARAM™.

Invented by Physics Professor Manus Hayne, ULTRARAM™ is a novel type of memory
with extraordinary properties. It combines the non-volatility of a data storage memory,
like flash, with the speed, energy-efficiency and endurance of a working memory, like
DRAM. To do this it exploits quantum resonant tunnelling in compound semiconductors,
materials commonly used in photonic devices such as LEDS, laser diodes and infrared
detectors, but not in digital electronics, which is the preserve of silicon.

Initially patented in the US, further patents on the technology are currently being
progressed in key technology markets around the world.

ULTRARAM™ is to be commercialised following the successful completion of the ICURe
Explore award as part of the prestigious Innovate UK ICURe Programme designed to help
researchers explore the commercial application and potential of UK research.

The ULTRARAM™ team was awarded an ICURe Exploit award at an event in Glasgow
which marked the culmination of various rounds of selection, from being proposed by the
University and accepted onto the ICURe programme and then being selected as a result
of the ‘Options Roundabout’.

Jess Wenmouth, Commercialisation Impact Manager at the University said: “The process
is a strenuous validation programme of both the scientific development, the market
discovery and evidence gathering of need as well as an endorsement of the team’s skills
and strengths to take this forward.”

Following this endorsement by the ICURe expert innovation panel, the proposal will
develop to become a formal spinout company from Lancaster University, with
discussions already taking place with potential investors.

The panel felt the key areas of strength for the project included a clear global
opportunity with potentially market changing technology and a huge market potential.
The award also opens the door for the spinout to bid for £300k of Innovate UK funding,
exclusively available to successful ICURe ‘graduates’.

ULTRARAM: A Low-Energy, High-Endurance, Compound-Semiconductor Memory on
We track new memories in our "emerging memory product lifecycle" which shows exact steps all new memories need to go through and how long those stages last. This information indicates that it is in between stage 1 and 2. This puts it 10+ years from production, 10-15 years behind ReRAM, 20+ years behind Optane/PCM, etc. Please see details of Product lifecycle at and I have presented it at flash memory summit. I will be glad to review the technology with them and discuss in upcoming presentations if someone believes I am incorrect in my assessment

In general the issue is not potential market, the issue is that "universal memory" has mathematical and scientific reasons to make it unlikely to materialize. Also it is a long and expensive journey to get any new memory to production. MRAM, Reram, and PCM/Optane are examples.

We add them to our public tracking list when they get a ~64K array out with characterization data which is stage 5 of 10.