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2010: the 5TB 3.5in HDD cometh

Hitachi promises 1TB per square inch

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Hitachi has pledged to release a 5TB 3.5in hard drive within two years, and it claims two of the drives will boast enough capacity to store everything in your brain.

According to a report by Nikkei Net, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies will use Current-Perpendicular-to-Plane Giant Magnetoresistance (CPP-GMR) magnetc read heads to achieve the aim. This, the firm claims, will allow its drives to store 1TB of data in every square inch of the recording surface.

Hitachi’s announcement is a step on from a claim it made back in October 2007 that 4TB of storage could become a reality by 2011.

It’s worth noting though that Hitachi’s not the first storage company to promise super-capacity HDDs. Back in August 2007, rival Fujitsu announced that 2.5in disks were its proposed ‘patterned medium’ for such compact storage. It too plans to have commercial models available by 2010.

Fujitsu's approach uses anodised aluminium to create a pattern of "nanoholes", each holding a portion of magnetic material used to store a single bit of data. The aluminium-oxide surrounding these so-called 'nanoholes' helps magnetically insulate each bit from all the others, preventing one from affecting another, which might lead to data corruption.

Nonetheless, Dr Yoshihiro Shiroishi from Hitachi has claimed that two of its 5TB will together “provide the same storage capacity as the human brain”.

So, if your memory’s not great, then just buy a couple of 5TB drives from Hitachi and download all your thoughts and memories onto them, before wiping the slate clean and staring afresh with another 10TB of brain capacity.

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