GE talks up 500GB-per-disc optical storage tech
Micro-holographics equal massive density discs
General Electric (GE) has demonstrated a storage technology with the potential for allowing 500GB of data to be written onto a single DVD-sized disc.
GE hailed its technology – known as micro-holographic storage – as a “next generation optical storage” technology. It added that the technology could see individual discs able to hold the same amount of data as 20 single-layer Blu-ray Discs.
Data is only written to the read surface of DVDs and BDs, but holographic storage uses the disc’s entire volume by creating 3D patterns that represent bits of information.
GE hasn’t actually created a 500GB micro-holographic disc yet. The firm’s boffins recorded micro-holographic marks with nearly one per cent reflectivity and a diameter of roughly one micron – one millionth of a metre — in order to demonstrate the basic technology.
Based on this achievement, GE’s boffins are confident that its scaled down marks would have sufficient reflectivity to enable 500GB to be written onto a disc.
GE has worked on holographic storage for over six years, but its micro-holographic storage breakthrough differs from traditional holographic storage by using smaller and less complex holograms, but which are nonetheless as reflective as their larger counterparts.
Good reflectivity is key: it's what allows the data-storing points within the 3D hologram to be read.
The level of reflectivity the GE team achieved is close to the range specified by the BD standard, paving the way, perhaps, for micro-holographic players also able to read CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray Discs.
GE is initially developing micro-holographic storage technology for commercial use, but says that consumer development will follow. ®
this will never be used for packaged media
Archive only consumer or commercial, but given how niche blu-ray is, I think packaged media is looking at the end of the road. DVD-quality downloads are the future unless someone feels like flushing a lot of money on yet another consumer disc player.
Fluorescent Multilayer Disc
Re: And the market for this will be?
@YARR Posted Monday 27th April 2009 19:56 GMT
"Hard discs in the gigabyte range have made CDs obsolete because they will store most people's entire music collection. Hard discs in the terabyte range with high speed broadband will make DVDs and even blu-rays redundant for the same reason."
Funny enough, my HTPC is a WDTV with hacked firmware, an ethernet adapter and 4x1Tb MyBooks USB drives. And I'm in the process of ripping my CD/DVD collection to it.
I remember when the blue-laser stuff was first announced many years ago. Much joy! To watch what the fucking RIAA/MPAA have forced onto the technology makes me sick. To watch how they delayed its introduction by YEARS so as to incorporate more of their fucking DRM just makes me angry.
They'll do the same to this one too, turning it from a possibly great storage medium to one where the readers/writers are so encumbered with DRM crap they'll cost 100x what they should cost, and be useless for mass storage. Again.
"A spokesman for General Electric indicated that time-to-market for consumer devices could be as short as a couple of years, depending on the outcome of the Pirate Bay appeal".