Researchers at the universities of York and Nijmegen have developed a method for accelerating data storage hundredfold.
The researchers say that if successfully translated to a storage product, the technology could theoretically cut the time to store a bit of data on a hard disk drive from a billionth of a second to a hundred-billionth of a second. For example, the method could decrease the time it takes to store a terabyte of data from about 22 minutes to about a minute and 20 seconds.
The researchers developed the technology by heating a magnetic material with laser bursts that alter the magnetic spin of the material at the atomic level. The researchers note that current storage on hard drives changes spin using a fluctuating magnetic field, which is slower. Their method uses X-ray Magnetic Circular Dichrosim to examine thin films of an alloy of gadolinium iron and cobalt to study ultrafast spin reversal.
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