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The Technology Behind Flash Memory

Digital photography is something that came into existence due to the sheer efforts of some of the technology experts, who devised mechanisms in such a way so as to make it better and easier than the older mechanism of photography involving analog cameras, and photosensitive films.

The development of optical sensors helped this in a great way. Though capturing a digital image was now easier the storage mechanism for these digital cameras was still an issue, until the flash memory came into existence. Memory cards that made use of flash memory made it possible to store large quantities of images and also helped in easy transfer of images from the camera onto any storage media.

 This was made possible due to the small size of the flash card which was achieved by reducing the number of moving parts, and by improving access speeds which was achieved using a large number of transistors that worked together in the form of an EEPROM chip, which lets the user perform multiple Read and Write operations on the memory card. This made it possible to reuse the memory card over and over again.

The basic technology used in these memory cards is called as Fowler-Nordheim tunneling which basically makes use of a number of transistors that constantly change the value from 1 to 0 and vice versa by making use of voltage. The different types of flash memory cards including the SD card, CF card, Multimedia card etc; make use of the same technology for their working. Though there are times when this very advantage, of frequent Read and Write operation, leads to data loss the presence of data, recovery utilities reduces the chances of permanent erasure of the data.

By Susan George


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