Towards infinite storage? Researchers at the University of Southampton (United Kingdom) have just developed an ultra-high density storage medium. This revolutionary storage unit can store up to 500 TB data on a format no larger than a CD. The storage density of this type of media is found to be in fine 10,000 times greater than that of a Blu-ray disc!
The first prototypes of 5D storage were unveiled in 2019, but researchers managed to improve write speed in order to make the technology truly usable.
The researchers relied on a technology of “laser engraving” of nanostructures deposited on a glass stash. The encoding of the data in bits here gives way to voxels, a “spatialized” encoding on 5 layers called 5D. The speed of engraving is clearly not the strong point of this new technology. The 5D storage medium records 1,000,000 voxels per second, which is far behind the write speeds of the SSD … but is clearly superior to previous 5D storage prototypes.
The “slowness” of 5D technology is not really a problem in itself since this very high density storage will be mainly used for data conservation over a long period (cold storage) and with a huge energy gain at the key (very little consumption required to maintain storage). Interesting advantages in the context of a goal of reducing the carbon footprint.