Disc That Can Store Data for A Million Years

Monday, October 28, 2013

Indestructible Information

Jeroen de Vries of the university of Twente MESA + Institute for Netherlands has developed an optical disc that carries information for an extremely long period and is highly durable and nearly indestructible. This development comes in at a time when there is increasing need of memory storage, but the lack of durability and longevity of the storage devices.

The information carrier is a wafer made up of tungsten encapsulated by silicon nitride, as the tungsten can withstand extremely high temperatures. The device uses etching techniques to write each bit of information. A QR code (Type of 2D barcode) is embedded into the tungsten and is protected by the nitride. Each pixel of the QR code consists of a smaller QR code, which in turn stores different information.

The disc was tested according to the Arrhenius model which states that, a medium should keep working for at least 1 million years if it is heated to 200 degrees Celsius. The test proved to be successful as the information could be easily read even after the heating.

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