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Tuesday, October 09, 2012
Multi-layer Optical Disc To Store Terabytes Of Data


Case Western Reserve University researchers have developed terabyte scale optical storage medium that stores 1 to 2 terabytes of data.

To load what is the equivalent of 50 commercially available Blu-ray discs on a single, same-size disc, the scientists use similar optical data storage technology. But, instead of packing more data on the surface they write data in many layers of the disc.

Using technology developed by the Center for Layered Polymeric Systems at Case School of Engineering, Kenneth Singer, the Ambrose Swasey professor of physics, and Brent Valle have developed an optical film with 64 data layers. The film is then is pasted onto the same plastic base Blu-ray discs are built on.

The scientists claim that a standard disc reader with just slight adjustments can be used to read the data on each layer without interference.

In order to read the data stored on the multi-layer disc, a laser light is focused into the data layers of the disc using objective lens. Light returing from the data layer passes through the objective lens through a pinhole, and then into a detector. When the laser light reaches a region outside the focus of the lens, inclusing in an adjustent data layer of the disc, the laser light takes the same return path, except now it is not focused when it reaches the pinhole and thus, it is rejected before reaching the detector. Compared to the technique used in current Blu-ray disc drives, this one just requires the addition of the pinhole to be able to do the focal imaging technique.

Singer and Valle founded Folio Photonics last week in an effort to push the technology to market. They hope that businesses and consumers may soon have a simple, cheaper way to store large amounts of digital data.


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