Incredible Record of 100TB Into 3.5-Inch HDD With HAMR/Helium

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This is a Press Release edited by on 2016.04.01

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Irvine, CA and Cupertino, CA - April 1, 016 - Western Digital Corp., Seagate Technology plc, and Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. together released a new HDD drive, the Enterprise TB100, with a worldwide record of 100TB capacity  - or ten times more than any current disk drive - to be in production by the three companies before the end of the year in their own manufacturing facilities.

The robust unit is packed into a standard 3.5-inch form factor with sixteen magnetic disk and laser heads, and eight magnetic disks, each one with a record areal density reaching 12.5TB per platter.

To get this enormous capacity, the three companies have worked together to use a combination of two main technologies: Heat-Assisted Magnetic Recording (HAMR) and helium-filled drives.

HAMR is a magnetic storage technology for HDDs in which a small laser is used to heat the part of the disk that is being written to. The effect of HAMR is to allow writing on a much smaller scale than before, drastically increasing the amount of data that can be held on a standard disk platter.

Helium-filled disk drives, already produced by Western Digital/HGST and Seagate, are based on an innovative technology that hermetically seals the HDD and replaces the air inside with helium, which is one-seventh the density of air. The less-dense atmosphere resets the boundaries and challenges of conventional high-capacity HDDs, allowing for dramatic increases in capacity, efficiency, reliability and value.

The new Enterprise TB100 delivers an improved MTBF of 3 million hours and provides consistent performance to customers in a 24x7 multi-drive environment. Enterprise ready, the unit is available in both 6Gb SATA and 12Gb SAS interfaces.

The capacity of the new Enterprise TB100 is going to revolutionize the storage industry to meet the growing storage requirements for private and public cloud-based data centers, especially for 'cold storage' or archiving, eliminating magnetic tape cartridges and optical discs by offering much higher capacity, access time and transfer rate. Also, the Enterprise TB100 will have an impact on the SSD market largely surpassing 15TB, the maximum capacity currently available on SSDs.

This Enterprise TB100 will be chosen by enterprise market leaders globally for its ability to address storage demands unlike any other technology in the industry.

A new joint-venture between Seagate, WD and Toshiba has been formed especially for the new Enterprise TB100, under the name of SeaWestTosh, Inc., owned by Western Digital (43%), 40% Seagate (40%) and Toshiba (17%) that put together all their intellectual properties relative to the new product. Analyst firm focused on HDD drives, Trendfocus, Inc., will be in charge to calculate the number of Enterprise TB100 shipped by each manufacturer to allocate royalties to each of them.

"We are happy to see that the HDD drive industry follows our recommendation for higher capacity HDD drives absolutely necessary to storage our huge amount of data," said Eric Brewer, VP Infrastructure at Google, Inc., and professor at UC Berkeley.

"With the amount of data today growing at an increasingly rapid rate, we are always on the lookout for storage solutions that offer better performance with lower overhead," said Fan Ruiqi, president of storage products, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. "The new Enterprise TB100 helps us meet these demands by offering incredible capacity with improvements in power and weight allowing us to drastically reduce our costs."

"At-scale data centers are faced with the challenge of efficiently storing massive amounts of unstructured digital data," said Mark Geenen, founder and president of Trendfocus. "The new 100TB HDD for enterprise data centers is its first product to employ helium technology and HAMR and will help data center customers to expand storage capacity economically."

"Customers today need storage solutions to support a diverse, and sometimes very specialized, set of applications and workload requirements," commented Western Digital CEO Steve Milligan. "In designing the Enterprise TB100, we look closely at the type of data being stored, performance needs, power requirements, environmental operating conditions, network topologies, uptime demand and more, to ensure our customers receive the right storage technology for the job."

"Cloud-based data center storage needs are expanding faster than many current infrastructures can sustain, rendering the capacity demands of users a herculean task for cloud managers," said Seagate chairman and CEO Luczo. "Built on our years of R&D of sealed-drive technology and HAMR, our new enterprise drive is designed precisely to help data-centric organizations worldwide solve the needs of their growing storage business."

"By providing complete solutions for both performance and capacity centric environments, we're enabling our data center customers and partners to focus on developing new services and capabilities that drive competitive differentiation and profitability for their businesses. The Enterprise TB100 announced ensure that Toshiba sustains its heritage as the most trusted provider of innovative storage offerings to maintain market leadership," added Steve Fingerhut, SVP and GM, Toshiba America Electronic Components, storage products.

Our Comments

For newspapers in some countries, it's a tradition to invent crazy news on April 1. This press release, dated April 1, has been totally invented by

It's a joke. A 100TB HDD with helium and HAMR could happen in the next ten years but it would be impossible to see the last three HDD makers working like that together for antitrust reasons.

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