Transparency in the Data Center? A New Storage Format Emerges

Glass Storage Disks

Posted on Friday, April 27, 2018

The quest for future data storage technologies means that all kinds of unusual materials and formats are being developed and tested. And like most new ideas, the latest sounds almost impossible.

Data transparency– with a twist

Scientists at RMIT University believe that they have developed a potential data storage medium that combines gold nanomaterials with hybrid glass in a new optical disk format. According to initial tests, this new material could offer capacities of up to 10TB- 400% more than current optical disk formats.

The disks themselves are made from tiny gold nanorods incorporated into an “organic modified ceramic.” The use of gold nanoparticles allows data to be recorded in five dimensions: three dimensions in space, a fourth for colour and a fifth using polarisation. Traditional storage techniques use just three dimensions. 

More than “just” increased capacity

Obviously, any increase in capacity is welcome, but the RMIT team believe that their new format still has much more to offer. Because of the inherent longevity of glass, they speculate that discs, and the data contained on them, could last up to 1,000 years.

The new disks are also extremely energy-efficient because power is only drawn when the disks are being read or loaded into a storage library. The researchers claim that by storing information on these new gold-glass disks, owners will be able to avoid the bi-annual capacity upgrade and migration projects common with other formats.

Could the future be transparent?

There is still a lot more testing to be done before the gold-glass optical disk is ready for production workloads. But the good news is that scientists are working to resolve the CTO’s most pressing problem – insufficient storage capacity.

As always when talking about new storage formats – watch this space. To discuss your data storage needs, contact us.

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