News Column

Patent Issued for Memory Module Connector with Auxiliary Power

July 3, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Computer Weekly News -- According to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, by VerticalNews journalists, a patent by the inventors Foster, Sr., Jimmy G. (Morrisville, NC); Sass, Tony C. (Fuquay Varina, NC); Wormsbecher, Paul A. (Apex, NC), filed on October 9, 2012, was published online on June 17, 2014.

The assignee for this patent, patent number 8753138, is International Business Machines Corporation (Armonk, NY).

Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "The present invention relates to memory module connectors, and more particularly to a memory module connector that provides auxiliary power to a memory module.

"Computer systems range from smaller, general purpose computers suitable for household and office use, to larger and more specialized computer systems. A personal computer (PC) is an example of a general-purpose computer that has a selection of hardware and peripherals suitable for an individual user. A desktop computer is a PC that is designed to be set up and used for an extended period of time at a fixed location having access to an electrical power outlet. A laptop computer has the same general capabilities of a desktop, along with features for enhanced mobility, such as lighter weight, an integrated display, and a battery pack for use at a variety of locations even where a building power outlet is unavailable. A server is another type of computer configured for serving the needs of multiple users simultaneously, which has particular utility in business environments. A larger system of interconnected servers may be consolidated in a single location for centralized system administration, and to provide access to multiple users over a network.

"General purpose computers and servers both include a combination of what may be referred to as short-term memory and long-term memory. Long-term memory provides a large storage capacity of a non-volatile (i.e. persistent) type, which persists even when the system is in a powered-off state. The most common long-term memory devices include hard disk drives (HDD) with rotating magnetic disks and newer solid-state devices (SSD) that require no moving parts for storage. Short-term memory, referred to usually as 'system memory,' typically has much less storage capacity but also much faster access times than long-term memory. Short-term memory devices typically comprise memory modules with dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips. DRAM chips are a transient (volatile) SSD, in that the DRAM chips have no moving parts but require constant power and a refresh rate. The relatively large capacity and persistent storage of long-term memory devices are suitable for storing software applications, data, and files indefinitely until ready for use by the computer system. When a computer system is in a powered-on state, selected software instructions and data may then be retrieved from long-term memory into short-term memory for faster, more efficient execution by a processor directly from short-term memory."

In addition to obtaining background information on this patent, VerticalNews editors also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "In one embodiment, an apparatus comprises a memory module including a card having horizontal upper and lower card edges, a pair of vertical card edges, and a pair of opposing card faces, with card edge voltage pads along the lower card edge, auxiliary voltage pads along at least one of the vertical card edges, and one or more memory chips on one or both card faces. A socket is provided for receiving the memory module at the lower card edge and supporting the memory module in a fully seated position. The socket includes a plurality of electrical socket contacts for engagement with the card edge voltage pads along the lower card edge when the memory module is in the fully seated position. A latch is pivotally coupled to the socket and movable between a latched position and an unlatched position. The latch includes electrical latch contacts positioned for being engaged with the auxiliary voltage pads when the latch is in the latched position and being disengaged from the auxiliary voltage pads when the latch is in the unlatched position."

For more information, see this patent: Foster, Sr., Jimmy G.; Sass, Tony C.; Wormsbecher, Paul A.. Memory Module Connector with Auxiliary Power. U.S. Patent Number 8753138, filed October 9, 2012, and published online on June 17, 2014. Patent URL: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=8753138.PN.&OS=PN/8753138RS=PN/8753138

Keywords for this news article include: Software, International Business Machines Corporation.

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Source: Computer Weekly News


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