Scientists based in Singapore brought a revolution in the data storage industry, bringing to the shores a new technology. The storage capacity can now be sextupled with the help of a simple household item, table salt.
The method is the brainchild of months of research by a group of scientists from Agency of Science, Technology and Research, National University of Singapore and the Data Storage Institute.
The new technology suggests that the bits in the data storage devices, more commonly known as the hard drives, can be arranged in a more organized way that would allow for six times the number data bits per square inch.
The hard drives are composed of bits that hold the data magnetically and there are networks of bits in several blocks on the magnetic disk. Until now, these bits were arranged in a more disorganized way because of lack of technology to track down their pattern.
The solution that is used to develop the photographic images of the patterns did not have the perfect solution to bring a visible contrast in the outlines of the diagrams. The result was lack of organization of the bits.
The solution, when mixed with salt, produced clearer picture of the data blueprint that could be followed up for neater arrangement of the bits. A scientist at the facility explained it quoting an example of a suitcase. The neater the arrangement of clothes in a suitcase, the more stuff it can carry.
This major yet subtle revolution in the exponential increment of the storage capacity will result in one terabyte (TB) of data per square inch, which means a whopping 6 TB on a normal sized hard drive that is currently common in use.
There is no suitable technology in place to produce storage devices on larger scales using this method. However, the scientists claimed that when the current equipments will run out of juice, the manufacturers will turn to this technology, which is economical and effective at the same time. The group further stated that the industry will adopt the technology by 2016.
Currently, a maximum of 3 TB hard drives are available in the market but only in select few devices like audio/video equipment, server computers and data storage repositories. The aforementioned method could bring huge storage devices within reach of the masses.