Video: Fujifilm's Capacity Jump (Interview)

New tape cartridge can store up to 35 TB of data in LTO form factor

The big news in tape technology earlier this year was an announcement in January of an extraordinary capacity leap enabled by improved read/write head technologies from IBM and a breakthrough Barium Ferrite (BaFe) media coating technology provided by Fujifilm. The result is a tape cartridge capable of storing up to 35 TB of data in an LTO form factor that should make its way to market in the not too distant future.

                  
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We recently conducted a video interview with Rich Gadomski, vice president of marketing for Fujifilm Recording Media USA, who explained the breakthrough and summarized for us Fujifilm’s ongoing work to keep tape storage technology current with business requirements as well as ever-expanding disk storage capacities.

The contribution of Fujifilm to the coming explosion in tape capacity can not be understated. Recent tape technology improvements have almost always resulted from the application of technology “borrowed” from the disk world – gigantic magneto-resistive (GMR) read/write heads, for example, that brought us the first TB sized tapes in the early 2000s came after GMR heads had been perfected on disk some years earlier.  However, the “secret sauce” behind the latest capacity improvement has more to do with Fujifilm’s BaFe medium than to co-opted disk technology.

BaFe provides, naturally, perpendicularly-oriented particles for data recording. This method is called Type 2 Perpendicular Magnetic Recording (PMR), which can be distinguished from Type 1 PMR technology responsible for capacity improvements in SATA disk drives. Type 1 PMR is a function of a specialty read/write head working in combination with a special substrate layer on a disk platter. Fujifilm’s media coating enables a similar density improvement as a function of BaFe coating which provides natural perpendicular recording with great signal-to-noise characteristics that, in turn, enables GMR heads to function well with the media.

Don’t worry. Gadomski limits the geek speak in his interview.

To see the interviews about IT and the enterprise, visit the C-4 Project at www.c4project.org).

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