Reference STATE OF THE ART Stan Augarten

ISBN 0-89919-195-9

Photo of
One of the Most Successful 16K Dynamic RAMs
The 4116


The introduction of the first 16K dynamic RAM in 1975 by Intel, a company that has been responsible for many of the most important innovations in IC technology, including the microprocessor, was a milestone in the history of the IC. A 16K RAM can store the equivalent of about one and a half double-spaced 8½-by-11-inch typewritten pages - a significant amount of information for a single chip. With such ICs to back them up, microprocessors become very powerful tools indeed. Many video games and personal computers use 16K RAMs exclusively.

  But it was not Intel's 16K RAM, the 2116, that succeeded in the marketplace, even though it was the first. That distinction went to Mostek's 4116. This was not the first time that Mostek had bested Intel; it had also happened with the 4K RAM. For various technical reasons associated with its design, Intel's chip was somewhat lacking in performance and reliability. A year after Intel's version appeared, Mostek came out with the chip on the right, the 4116. Fast, reliable, and easy to make, it became the standard 16K dynamic RAM.

Reading or writing a bit into the 4116 requires 150 billionths of a second. The thick black grids are composed of memory cells, the other circuits of amplifiers, decoders, and refreshers. Actual size: 0.281 x 0.516 inches. Photo of


©Copyright Stan Augarten
This book is provided for general reference. The National Museum of American History and the Smithsonian Institution make no claims as to the accuracy or completeness of this work.

page:   Index    2   4   6   8   10   12   14   16   18   20   22   24   26   28   30   32   34   36   38   40   42   44   46   48   50   52   54   56   58   60   62   64   66   68   70   72   74   76  

National Museum of American History

HomeSearchChip TalkChip ArtPatentsPeoplePicturesCreditsCopyrightComments