Historically, industrial-grade SSDs have had to offer reliability, endurance and extended temperatures support. Today, they also need to feature high capacity, plus high performance. To that end, a number of the best SSD makers started to offer industrial-class drives in M.2 form-factors in recent years. Western Digital wasn't one of them -- until this week. On Tuesday, the brand introduced its first M.2 SSDs for emerging automotive, industrial and Internet of Things (IoT) applications.
The Western Digital IX SN530 is based on the company's own controller and firmware, as well as 96-layer 3D TLC NAND memory that can work in TLC or SLC mode.
Depending on endurance requirements, the IX SN530 can offer 256GB-2TB of 3D TLC NAND or 85GB-340GB of 3D SLC NAND memory. TLC drives are rated for up to 5,200TBW (terabytes written); whereas, SLC SSDs are rated for up to 24PBW (petabytes written).
As far as performance is concerned, Western Digital claims the IX SN530 drives offer up to 2,400 MBps sequential read speed as well as up to 1,950 MBps sequential write speed.
The manufacturer claims that the new drives feature a comprehensive NVMe 1.4-based thermal management and can survive temperatures between from -40-85 degrees Celsius (-40-185 degrees Fahrenheit)
Being designed for a broad range of emerging applications, (including robotics, industrial computers, IoT gateways and in-flight entertainment systems), Western Digital's IX SN530 come in M.2 2230 or M.2 2280 form factors and offer various levels of endurance and performance. Essentially, the company's addressing multiple markets with a single family of drives, which simplifies its product portfolio and lowers costs. Given that industrial applications tend to have very long lifecycles, expect the IX SN530 to stay on the market for a long time.
Western Digital's IX SN530 drives are now sampling with select customers. Commercial shipments of the SSDs will start after the company's clients validate and qualify the drives with their applications.
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Anton Shilov is a Freelance News Writer at Tom’s Hardware US. Over the past couple of decades, he has covered everything from CPUs and GPUs to supercomputers and from modern process technologies and latest fab tools to high-tech industry trends.