China’s First Domestic PCIe 5.0 Enterprise SSD Controller Enters Mass Production

EE Times China reports that Yingren Technology (better known as InnoGrit outside China) has announced that the enterprise-level YR S900 PCIe 5.0 SSD controller has entered mass production. Previously unheard of, the YR S900 represents a significant accomplishment as it’s China’s first domestic PCIe 5.0 SSD controller.

The YR S900 is a four-channel SSD controller based on the open-source RISC-V architecture. The design ensures that the YR S900 complies with U.S. export restrictions, so the company doesn’t encounter obstacles when designing and manufacturing the SSD controller. However, Yingren Technology didn’t reveal the process node to produce the YR S900.

The YR S900 embraces the speedy PCIe 5.0 interface and fully supports the NVMe 2.0 protocol. It has a somewhat flexible design, allowing for 16-channel or 18-channel configurations. More importantly, the YR S900 is compatible with mainstream NAND from all the big-name manufacturers. The PCIe 5.0 controller harmonizes especially well with NAND from Yangtze Memory Technologies Corp (YMTC).

In a short demo, the YR S900 exhibited very competitive performance numbers. The PCIe 5.0 controller delivered sequential read and write speeds up to 14 GB/s and 12 GB/s, respectively. The random performance peaked at 3.5 million IOPS reads and 2.5 million IOPS writes. The YR S900’s performance is comparable to Phison’s PS5026-E26 SSD controller that powers the current wave of consumer PCIe 5.0 SSDs.

InnoGrit has equipped the YR S900 with the company’s third-generation ECC engine to optimize 4K LDPC encoding and decoding. According to the company, it works alongside a new hybrid adaptive ECC solution that reportedly boosts the performance of TLC and QLC NAND. When paired with Kioxia’s XL-Flash, InnoGrit recorded 4K random read latency as low as 10us. The implementation provides higher data throughput and other benefits, such as stability and longer service life. The YR S900’s feature set includes FDP (Flexible Data Placement), SR-IOV hardware virtualization,  CMB (Controller Memory Buffer), and different data encryption algorithms.

While Yingren Technology confirmed that the YR S900 is already being mass-produced, the company didn’t provide an estimated time frame for when we can expect to see the controller in future enterprise PCIe 5.0 SSDs. The YR S900 will likely be used predominantly for SSD solutions in China. Nonetheless, seeing if adoption transcends the Chinese market will be interesting.