Samsung Unveils Innovative Storage Technology at OCP Virtual Global Summit

Open-source Storage Collaboration Keynote Showcases PM9A3 NVMe SSDs for Datacenters, with Support for PCIe Gen 4, use of E1.S Form-factor, and a New Flash Reference Design

SAN JOSE, Calif. — (BUSINESS WIRE) — May 12, 2020 — Samsung announced today in an OCP Virtual Summit keynote that it has developed a solid state drive (PM9A3 SSD) with a SNIA-based* E1.S form factor and full PCIe Gen 4 support to harness the production efficiencies of the company’s sixth-generation (1xx-layer), three-bit V-NAND. At the same time, the company said that it has introduced a comprehensive reference design for its E1.S-based storage system.

The keynote, in addition to announcing the PM9A3, highlighted a new approach to open source multi-industry storage collaboration that spotlighted the development of an open-source platform (OSP) fundamentally tied to cloud-scale infrastructure deployments. It was presented by Jongyoul Lee, senior vice president of Samsung’s Memory Software Development Team at the Open Compute Project Virtual Global Summit.

“Offering the most 1U server-optimized form-factor, the PM9A3 will improve space utilization, add PCIe Gen4 speeds, enable increased capacity and more,” said Mr. Lee. “We see it eventually becoming the most sought-after storage solution on the market for tier one and tier two cloud datacenter servers, and one of the more cost-effective,” he added.

The E1.S drive form-factor combines major benefits of 2.5-inch U.2 SSDs, with what is widely considered the optimal storage design for 1U servers today. For M.2 SSD users, the E1.S SSD will expand the SSD power budget, accommodate PCIe Gen 4, and allow datacenter managers to add more SSDs per rack-unit.

The newly announced PM9A3 drive, to be available in three versions**, is expected to feature a PCIe Gen 4 (x4) interface for more than twice the sequential read performance of PCIe Gen 3 (3200MB/s), and include dedicated hardware accelerators for nearly twice the random writes (180,000 IOPs) of the previous generation. Capacities will range from 960 GB to 7.68 TB.

The PM9A3 SSD’s E1.S design with an industry-standard EDSFF connector is set to enhance the industry’s most popular SSD lineup, one that includes the leading SSD for datacenter applications (PM983).

For datacenters now using U.2 SSDs, the E1.S form factor will allow hardware engineers to add more SSDs per server, freeing up additional 1U space and lowering the total cost of ownership.

Open-source Platform Reference Design

Samsung is also providing a collaborative server reference design to assist datacenter managers in quickly adopting and deploying its E1.S-based storage system.

The reference design, made by Inspur, is now available.

About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

Samsung inspires the world and shapes the future with transformative ideas and technologies. The company is redefining the worlds of TVs, smartphones, wearable devices, tablets, digital appliances, network systems, and memory, system LSI, foundry and LED solutions. For the latest news, please visit the Samsung Newsroom at


* Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) SFF-TA-1006

** Form Factor and Speed Table

Samsung PM9A3 Speeds

Random Reads

Random Writes

Sequential Reads

Sequential Writes


900,000 IOPS

180,000 IOPS

Up to 6500 MB/s

Up to 3500 MB/s


900,000 IOPS

180,000 IOPS

Up to 6500 MB/s

Up to 3500 MB/s


550,000 IOPS

70,000 IOPS

Up to 3500 MB/s

Up to 1750 MB/s



John Lucas
for Samsung Semiconductor, Inc.

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