Creation of 1.6 petabits CD

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Scientists from the University of Shanghai for Science and Technology, the Shanghai Institute of Optics and Fine Mechanics, and other Chinese institutions have developed a groundbreaking optical storage disc with a capacity of 1.6 petabits, equivalent to 200 terabytes. This capacity is significantly higher than the largest hard drives currently available, which can store up to 100 terabytes. The key to achieving this remarkable storage capacity is the use of an ultra-transparent film called "aggregation-induced emission dye-doped photoresist" (AIE-DDPR), which allows for data encoding on up to 100 layers of the disc. This technology, combined with dual lasers, enables the encoding and reading of data from spots approximately one-tenth the wavelength of the visible light used, surpassing the optical diffraction limit that has historically restricted the resolution of optical imaging systems. This advancement in optical storage technology represents a significant leap over existing storage methods, such as CD-ROMs, DVDs, and Blu-rays, which are limited to storing data in a much smaller number of layers. The researchers have indicated that these discs can likely be manufactured in about six minutes each using processes similar to those used for DVDs, suggesting the potential for scalable production. The implications of this technology are vast, particularly for data centers, which could potentially store an exabit of information in a single room, a feat that would currently require a space the size of a stadium. This could dramatically reduce the physical footprint and energy consumption of data storage facilities. Despite the declining interest in physical media for consumer entertainment, the technology's potential for data storage in enterprise and archival applications is significant. The researchers are optimistic about the future applications of this technology, including the possibility of reducing the space needed for high-capacity data storage from large facilities to single rooms, thereby addressing some of the current challenges faced by data centers in terms of space, heat, and energy consumption.
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