1TB per Sqaure Inch?

News Posted 30/11/2006
Author: PV5150
Source: BetaNews

While Toshiba and Seagate have been in competition with one another to drive up the areal density of hard drives using new perpendicular recording technology, the scientists at Fujitsu have been planning to leap-frog their competitors in one fell swoop. There’s a physical maximum, they found, to how densely data can be packed even with perpendicular mechanisms.

Their objective is to overcome that physical barrier by means of a curious physical trick involving at least three devices a hard drive has never had to use thus far: a very small space heater, a virtual refrigerator just as small, and an optical reading mechanism.

You read correctly: an optical element, not a magnetic one, but not for reading the data. It’s to locate the spot on the rotating disk where the heating element will work its alchemy. Up to now, Fujitsu has had two of the three elements in its back pocket. Yesterday, it announced the third: an optical element that will help future hard drives achieve areal densities greater than the 1 terabyte (TB) per square inch theoretical maximum.

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