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GE holographic disc stores 500GB of data

Researchers at GE have validated technology that will one day usher in the next generation of optical storage -- holographic storage. The researchers have developed a disc the size of a standard DVD that can hold 500GB of data. The researchers say that conventional optical storage discs only store information on the surface of a disc while holographic storage can store information on the entire volume of the disc material.

Tiny holographic bits of information are written to the disc in patterns and can then be read back by the drive. The capacity of holographic discs are a breakthrough, but the technology used in the process is similar enough to the current DVD and Blu-ray technology in wide use that future optical drives will be able to read CD, DVD, Blu-ray, and holographic discs.

GE's Brian Lawrence said in a statement, "GE’s breakthrough is a huge step toward bringing our next generation holographic storage technology to the everyday consumer. Because GE’s micro-holographic discs could essentially be read and played using similar optics to those found in standard Blu-ray players, our technology will pave the way for cost-effective, robust and reliable holographic drives that could be in every home. The day when you can store your entire high definition movie collection on one disc and support high resolution formats like 3-D television is closer than you think."

GE reports that its researchers have been able to successfully record micro-holographic marks approaching one percent reflectivity at a diameter of about one micron. The one-micron size will allow a disc the size of a conventional DVD to hold 500GB of data. GE has been working on holographic storage for six years and the 500GB capacity is a milestone in its research. The researchers hope to eventually devise a way to store 1,000GB of data on a single disc using the holographic process. In 2007, InPhase started shipping holographic writers and media that could store 300GB per disc.

GE's Bill Kernick said, "GE’s holographic storage program has turned the corner, and with this milestone we can now intensify our efforts in commercialization opportunities. We’ll continue to engage with a variety of strategic partners to create the best route from product development to introduction into the marketplace."

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RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By ReligiousScience on 4/28/2009 8:12:47 PM , Rating: 5
This statement is off in so many ways I don't even know where to begin...

Maybe the replies will do the talking for me.

RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By v3rt1g0 on 4/28/2009 8:20:59 PM , Rating: 4
It's Pirks. What do you expect?

RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By Pirks on 4/28/09, Rating: -1
RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By chmilz on 4/28/2009 8:35:43 PM , Rating: 1
<shudder> I have to agree with Pirks. Solid state storage technology is killing motorized devices at a spectacular rate, for good reason. Add the internet to the equation and goodnight, thanks for coming.

RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By inighthawki on 4/28/2009 9:38:52 PM , Rating: 3
When i can get a 5gb sd card for < 10 cents each let me know

By albundy2 on 4/29/2009 5:03:36 AM , Rating: 2
where can YOU get a rewritable dvd that can be writen on over 100,000 for 10 cents?

also, just a shot in the dark here, does anyone make flash that can be writen to once and read till it falls apart, like a dvd? something tells me this would be the 5GB flash card for 10 cents your looking for.

RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By Diesel Donkey on 4/28/2009 10:02:38 PM , Rating: 2
For now it is in optical disc format, but isn't the holy grail of holographic storage a solid-state system with no moving parts? I can't seem to find a reference at the moment, but I believe that it is an eventual goal for the technology.

By Diesel Donkey on 4/28/2009 10:12:53 PM , Rating: 2
Here's an example:

Look near the bottom.

By afkrotch on 4/29/2009 11:48:53 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, SSD tech is doing it at a spectacular rate. Hence why majority of everything still uses motorized devices.

RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By mattclary on 4/28/2009 8:35:08 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, I bet he's not that far off the mark. I'm guessing the standard "3 to 5 years away" for these disks... By that time, I suspect SSDs are going to be REALLY freaking cheap. As the process continues to shrink, capacity is going to be easy to get at a great price.

RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By Totally on 4/28/09, Rating: -1
RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By Pirks on 4/29/2009 12:05:19 AM , Rating: 3
640K will be enough for everybody

RE: holo/optic/disc storage is dead
By ipay on 5/2/2009 3:31:01 AM , Rating: 2
Maybe its not dead yet but it should die quick and painful death for all the compatibility crap consumers have to put up with. Its really sad. I refuse to buy optical drive for my next build whether blu-ray or anything else, knowing that as soon as the newer and faster discs come out my hardware will be garbage. Ohh.. and not to even mention different disc manufacturers..

"Let's face it, we're not changing the world. We're building a product that helps people buy more crap - and watch porn." -- Seagate CEO Bill Watkins

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