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April 22nd, 2008
The five-year, $1 million project at Swinburne University of Technology's Centre for Micro-Photonics is looking at how nanotechnology, particularly the use of nanoparticles, can be used to boost the amount of information contained on a disc.
"We have been researching the development of new recording material that can respond to multiple dimensions of recording laser light, which is basically from nanotechnology," project chief investigator James Chon said.
The ultimate aim is to include as much as a petabyte (one quadrillion bytes of data) on a single disc.
This is 20,000 times greater than the amount of data that can be stored on a Blu-ray disc, which uses a high-density optical format.
Funded by the Australian Research Council, the project aims to create next-generation discs using a number of techniques, the first of which involves dramatically increasing the number of layers in which data can be stored. Double-sided DVDs can have up to four layers, but the Swinburne team has experimentally demonstrated that it can increase storage capacity by up to 52 layers. "If we wanted to, we could go up to 200 and 300 layers," Dr Chon said.
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