Researchers discover new technology that allows for disc that holds up to 360 TB data

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Researchers have made a breakthrough in storage technology that could potentially make way for a disc that puts the highest capacity dual-layer Blu-ray disk we know of today to shame. What exactly are we talking about, you as? Try 360 TB in a single disc. Oh, and that disc would be able to hold all that data for a million years. Would the human race even be around that time? Who knows.

The new type of memory is made possible using the power of a very fast femtosecond laser which researchers have used to write 300KB of data to a medium that consists of self-assembled nanostructures within fused quartz. The femtosecond laser can write data to “three layers of nanostructured dots within the glass only five micrometers apart” and the researchers claim that it writes data in five dimensions, which is “a figure based on the size, orientation, and three-dimensional position of the nanostructures.”

Jingyu Zhang led a team of researchers from the University of Southampton’s Optoelectronics Research Center and Eindhoven’s University of Technology in making the breakthrough discovery. Professor Peter Kazansky of the Optoelectronics Research Center was understandably quite excited about the whole thing:

“It is thrilling to think that we have created the first document [that] will likely survive the human race. This technology can secure the last evidence of civilization: all we’ve learnt will not be forgotten.”

Now their team is looking to bring the technology to the commercial space.

And to think I just bought a portable 2TB hard drive.

[via CNET]

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7 comments

  1. Louis

    [@Bub] Yes, I get your explanation, appreciate it.

    Indeed, it will be wonderful if this is not just theory (recently I also read here of some theoretical way of cramming huge amounts of data in the humble DVD, let alone BD) — we should hope this will be economically feasible to manufacture.

    But then, more importantly, consider whether Big Business and /or Government (read NSA etc) will not kill it off, and not allow it to get to market, because of Vested Interests obsolete current technology (note this was not a breakthrough by a R & D Division of any leading manufacturer) and / or “Security Reasons (ya’ll know this will be very dangerous in the hands of terrorists, so we can’t allow this to be used by the Public).

    Hell, I’d like one of these :-)

  2. Bub

    [@Louis] If you prefer, use the term “degrees of freedom” instead. The point is that information is conveyed in five different ways, including the three spatial dimensions, and two other characteristics. In much the same way that one might use a bubble graph to convey three-dimensional information on a two-dimensional graph.