Myung-Soo Jung is a professor in the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at KAIST.  Professor Jung's research team has developed the world's first 'light PC' that does not lose data even if the power is cut off.  (provided by KAIST)
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KAIST’s world’s first development of a ‘computer that does not lose information even if there is a power outage’

Myung-Soo Jung is a professor in the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at KAIST. Professor Jung’s research team has developed the world’s first ‘light PC’ that does not lose data even if the power is cut off. (provided by KAIST)

A Korean research team has developed the world’s first computer in which data does not disappear even when the power is turned off.

KAIST announced on April 25 that a research team led by Professor Myung-soo Jung of the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering developed the world’s first ‘Lightweight Persistence Centric System (Light PC)’.

In this computer, all information (running state, data) at the moment when computer time stopped is maintained regardless of whether power is supplied or not. All retained information can be restored and operated immediately when the user wants it at any time.

Conventional computers use volatile memory (DRAM) as their main memory. Because of this, when the power is lost, the data stored in the memory is lost. On the other hand, non-volatile memory can store data permanently by providing less power consumption and larger capacity than DRAM. However, the non-volatile memory was not fully used as the main memory due to slow performance due to the complex internal structure design. Used together with DRAM, it has been used as a form of selectively retaining only some data stored in non-volatile memory.

Professor Myung-soo Jung’s research team at KAIST has developed a processor, memory controller, and operating system technology that can maintain all program execution status and data in a computer non-volatile without power. To this end, the research team configured the system using only persistent memory without existing memory or storage devices, and maintained most of the system state in a non-volatile state.

The light PC technology developed by the research team minimized volatile components in the hardware data path of the processor and simplified the complex internal structure as much as possible. In addition, by maximizing the parallelism of data processing, the performance is improved so that users do not feel a big performance difference from a high-performance system that uses only DRAM.

In addition, to maintain consistency while the computer time is stopped, an operating system with various types of persistence functions is built to prevent arbitrary data changes. Consistency is maintained so that when power is reconnected, the computer can resume from where it left off without a boot process.

High energy efficiency is also a characteristic of the light PC. Light PC showed up to 8 times larger memory, 4.3 times faster application execution, and 73% power consumption reduction compared to conventional computers.

Professor Jung Myung-soo said, “The non-volatile computer developed this time can provide large-capacity memory and high reliability and service safety at the same time. It is expected to maximize energy efficiency due to low-power operation of data centers and high-performance computing.” “The research core technology minimizes battery usage in vehicles, mobile phones, and Internet of Things devices, and is widely used for a hyper-connected society. I hope it can be used.”

[윤은별 기자]


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