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Fujifilm Sets New Data Storage Record of 154TB on Prototype Tape

VALHALLA, N.Y.— Fujifilm Recording Media U.S.A., Inc., in conjunction with IBM, has set a new record in areal data density: 85.9 billion bits per square inch on linear magnetic particulate tape.

This breakthrough in data density equates to a standard LTO cartridge capable of storing up to 154 terabytes of uncompressed data, which is 62 times greater than today’s current LTO6 cartridge capacity.

This record was reached using an advanced prototype tape incorporating Nanocubic technology developed by Fujifilm, with advanced tape-drive technologies developed by IBM: proprietary Nanocubicand Barium Ferrite particle technologies.

“This data density achievement is significant as corporate data is growing at an incredible rate, and secure and reliable storage remain critical considerations in today’s market,” said Peter Faulhaber, president, Fujifilm Recording Media U.S.A., Inc.

Fujifilm’s research addresses previous shortcomings associated with decreasing the magnetic particle size and thermal stability degradation. The Nanocubic technology decreases the BaFe magnetic particle volume, which is essential for high-density data recording, while maintaining its thermal stability to ensure long term archivability of recorded data.

Since the surface roughness of tape is directly related to both signal-to-noise ratio and high quality output, Nanocubic technology incorporates NANO coating and dispersion techniques to strictly control surface smoothness. In addition, NANO perpendicular orientation precisely aligns the BaFe particles to produce high quality read signal over a wide frequency.

The new dispersion process and dispersion material make it possible to separate each BaFe particle and avoid the agglomeration of fine BaFe particles. The uniformly dispersed BaFe particles form a thinner magnetic layer with an extremely smooth surface. These technologies lead to improved signal-to-noise ratios and high frequency responses, and eliminate the need for expensive metal sputtering or evaporation coating methods.

This new technology allows the BaFe particle orientation to be precisely controlled by taking advantage of the magnetocrystalline anisotropy of BaFe to deliver a high quality read signal over a wide frequency.

“The team at IBM has focused on improving head technology to produce significantly stronger magnetic fields needed for improved tape capacity, speed and reliability, while leveraging Fujifilm’s advanced Nanocubic technology,” said Norio Shibata, corporate vice president, Fujifilm Corporation, Recording Media Products Division.

IBM researchers developed new technologies, including enhanced write field head that enables the use of much finer BaFe particles; advanced servo control that allows head positioning with nano-scale fidelity and enables a 27 fold increase in track density compared to the LTO6 format; signal-processing algorithms for the data channel that enable reliable operation with an ultra-narrow 90nm wide giant magnetoresistive reader.