Researchers devise a way to store data on magnetic media using heat

Feb 8, 2012
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Researchers devise a way to store data on magnetic media using heat

Much research has been performed working on ways to improve the speed and power efficiency of data storage devices such as hard drives. A group of researchers from York University are working as part of an international team and the team has found that they can store information using heat instead of a magnetic field on a magnetic medium. The results is much faster and more power efficient storage of data than any traditional hard drive offers today.

According to a team member the new process allows the recording of terabytes of information each second, which is hundreds of times faster than the storage technology in use today. In a conventional hard drive an external magnetic field is applied to magnetic medium such as a spinning disc inside a traditional HDD. With the new method, the researchers use a short pulse of heat.

That heat pulse is sufficient to invert the magnetic poles on magnetic medium. That reversal of magnetic poles is all that is needed to make the positive or negative required for binary code. There is no indication of when this sort of hardware may make it to market or how much storage devices based on this technology would cost.

York University physicist Thomas Ostler said, "Instead of using a magnetic field to record information on a magnetic medium, we harnessed much stronger internal forces and recorded information using only heat."

"This revolutionary method allows the recording of terabytes — thousands of gigabytes — of information per second, hundreds of times faster than present hard-drive technology. As there is no need for a magnetic field, there is also less energy consumption."

[via The Engineer]


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