May 19, 2006
Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd (President and CEO: Shigetaka Komori; hereinafter referred to as “Fujifilm”) announced that IBM researchers utilized advanced Fujifilm NANOCUBIC technology incorporating a new Barium Ferrite particle to demonstrate the potential of multiple-terabyte storage capacity on a single data tape cartridge.
IBM researchers were able to demonstrate the ability to store 6.67 billion bits per square inch of data tape using the linear recording format - more than 15 times the recording density of current LTO Gen 3 tape. The demonstration points to the possibility of creating a single tape cartridge capable of holding eight terabytes in the future.
IBM researchers combined advances in IBM technology with Fujifilm next-generation magnetic tape innovation using smaller Barium Ferrite (BaFe) magnetic particles. IBM chose Fujifilm because the company's NANOCUBIC technology offered the highest recording density with the highest signal-to-noise ratio and resolution.
In addition, the Fujifilm NANOCUBIC technology utilizes a cost-effective, dual-layer particulate process for creating the media, which is more commercially viable than other systems such as evaporated metal or sputtering techniques. Because of this, advanced Fujifilm tape media can be produced using existing manufacturing equipment and processes.
Barium ferrite is a naturally stable crystalline particle that does not corrode or change chemically over time, making it an optimal particle for next-generation tape storage media. The unique Fujifilm NANOCUBIC technology coats the Barium Ferrite particles in a very uniform manner (with thickness variation of less than 10 percent across the length of the tape), resulting in a much smoother magnetic surface.
A uniform dispersion of magnetic material is extremely important to the quality of a magnetic media - and even more so as capacities are increased. Fujifilm NANOCUBIC dispersion technology provided improvements that allowed the BaFe particles to be well isolated while creating a magnetic layer of only 65nm. The combination of small, uniformly dispersed particles and a uniformly coated thin layer result in higher signal-to-noise ratios and resolution - critical for maximizing the capability of Giant Magneto-Resistive (GMR) heads, which represent one of the advances in next-generation recording technology.
Fujifilm announced first-generation NANOCUBIC technology in 2002, which helped IBM in the development of IBM SystemStorage™ Enterprise Tape Cartridge 3592, the first product to ship incorporating Fujifilm NANOCUBIC technology. Since then, other leading drive manufacturers have announced products utilizing NANOCUBIC technology.
The overall demand for tape products continues to be strong. Storage analysts' estimates suggest that there will be roughly 57 million enterprise and midrange data cartridges shipped in 2006 - enough to store nearly 8,500 petabytes of data. In addition to traditional data storage applications, the professional video market is adopting IT data storage technologies for the increasingly large digital video files. A single hour of uncompressed high definition broadcast creates a digital file roughly 500 GB in size.
IBM selected the Fujifilm NANOCUBIC technology for use in the IBM 3592 tape cartridge for its ability to deliver the highest recording density in a linear recording format system. The 3592 cartridge has a current native capacity of up to 500GB (with 1.5 terabytes possible using 3:1 compression), a native drive data transfer rate of up to 100MB per second and is designed to provide a storage life of more than 30 years.
Higher Resolution: NANOCUBIC technology employs an advanced precision coating process that can uniformly control a very thin magnetic layer currently at 65 nanometers (with only 10 percent variation for length of tape) which maintains higher resolution;
Higher Signal to Noise Ratio: Fujifilm scientists identified hexagon-shaped barium-ferrite magnetic particles as having the smaller size, higher coercivity and low noise needed to produce the high signal-to-noise ratio required for high density recording media; and
Superior Storage Performance: Superior archival and reliability performance, a critical requirement for enterprise system users, is achieved through the combination of the development of a new binder which provides stable chemical and physical performance and particles that provides stable chemical performance.
Mass Production Capability: This advanced magnetic tape was designed to maximize efficiencies and yields of current manufacturing systems. Fujifilm NANOCUBIC technology does not require any significant changes to existing tape coating equipment or processes, as would be necessary with production techniques such as sputtering or metal evaporation.
Fujifilm was the first Japan domestic producer of computer tape in 1965, and has more than 40 years of experience in manufacturing enterprise class back-up tape for the computer industry. The company's ATOMM technology, introduced in 1992, resulted in such breakthrough products as Zip® disks, DLTtape® IV, Super DLTtape® and LTO Ultrium data cartridges. With its higher recording density and superior performance and reliability, Fujifilm NANOCUBIC technology is expected to enable several next-generation products in the near future for consumer, mid-range and enterprise applications.
TotalStorage is a trademark of IBM.
Zip is a trademark of Iomega Corp.
DLTtape is a registered trademark of Quantum Corporation.
LTO is a trademark of Hewlett Packard, IBM and Quantum Corporation.
FUJI PHOTO FILM CO., Ltd.
Recording Media Products Division
26-30, Nishiazabu 2-Chome,
Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-8620, Japan