Hitachi Maxell and Tokyo Institute of Technology announce the Development of Ultra High Capacity Tape Media with Ultra-thin High-density Nano-granular Magnetic Film by Facing Targets Sputtering Method
Allowing for over 10 TB capacity per a tape cartridge.
TOKYO:- Hitachi Maxell, Ltd.(TSE/OJE:6810) and Tokyo Institute of Technology today jointly announced the collaboratively pursue development of ultra high capacity tape media with ultra-thin high-density nano-granular magnetic film, as a funded program of “Collaborative Development of Innovative Seeds, Potentiality Verification Stage”*1 of the Japan Science Technology Agency (JST). Maxell and Tokyo Inst. Tech. announced successful completion of much higher playback performance of ultra high capacity tape media with ultra-thin high-density nano-granular magnetic film than that of existing linear tape products. The tape media with ultra-thin high-density nano-granular magnetic film by using of facing targets sputtering method enables over 10 TB cartridges as a future product, after today’s coated tape media era, which is formed of nano-sized magnetic particle.
Today coated tape media are made by coating a magnetic layer with magnetic particles on a base film. For over 10 TB capacity per a cartridge, a particle size must be reduced to less 10 nanometer (nm) and coated on a plastic film with very thin thickness. However, coating method and evaporation process cannot be applicable to form such a thin layer by fine particle less than 10 nm at this moment.
The tape media with ultra-thin high-density nano-granular magnetic film are advanced storage tape media with a view to future products after today’s coated tape media era. The sputtering process enables formation of a very thin recording layer on a film with a few nm sized magnetic materials, that allows over 10 TB capacity per a tape cartridge. The magnetic layer in an ultra-thin high-density nano-granular magnetic film is formed by using of facing targets sputtering method, which was originally invented by Assoc. Prof. Shigeki Nakagawa et al. of Tokyo Institute of Technology, Graduate School of Engineering, Department of Physical Electronics. Maxell and Tokyo Inst. Tech. succeeded formation of nanometer-sized magnetic grains on a film substrate by combination of this new sputtering method in Tokyo Inst. Tech. and core technologies for magnetic tape design and experiences in Maxell. Evaluation of playback performance of the formed tape media with ultra-thin high-density nano-granular magnetic film shows twice signal to noise ratio (S/N ratio) and 30% high resolution comparing with present products*2 such like LTO Ultrium 3 data cartridge and DLTtape S4® tape.
Maxell and Tokyo Inst. Tech. cooperate to make a success of development of ultra high capacity tape media with ultra-thin high-density nano-granular magnetic film as a funded program of “Collaborative Development of Innovative Seeds, Potentiality Verification Stage” of the JST, to realize a storage tape product*3 for huge capacity backup solution in the future.
*1 A funded program of “Collaborative Development of Innovative Seeds, Potentiality Verification Stage” of the Japan Science Technology Agency (JST) aims to connect seeds candidate that is found out through industry’s viewpoint from basic research in universities, national and other public research institutes to innovation creation.
*2 Comparison with Maxell products.
*3 Maxell has released a series of data storage products such like Maxell DLTtape S4® cartridge (capacity 800 GB) and Maxell LTO Ultrium 3 data cartridge (capacity 400 GB). Also, Maxell has developed a new spherical magnetic particle “NanoCAP” (Nano Composite Advanced Particle) technology, which allows 10 TB-class tape cartridges. Maxell is proud to continue to lead in the storage product market, by providing seamless transition for media technology migration, after fine metal particles and NanoCAP.
1. Ultra high capacity tape media with ultra-thin high-density nano-granular magnetic film formed by facing targets sputtering
Facing targets sputtering, which was developed in Tokyo Institute of Technology, was integrated to enable formation of nanometer-sized grains less than 10 nm on a film substrate. This sputtering method is characterized by deposition of films without damages and heating, as a result of a substrate departed from discharge plasma and suppression of influx of electrons.
Since magnetic crystal grain is oriented obliquely with respect to the surface of the plastic substrate in the magnetic tape produced by the evaporation method, the evaporated tape media cannot be applicable to linear format tape with forward and reverse directions. On the other hand, the deposited crystal column can be formed in the thin magnetic layer perpendicular to the film surface with high coercivity by sputtering method. That makes sputtered layer suitable for high-capacity data storage tape.
2. Much higher playback performance than that of existing linear tape products*2
Formed nano-granular magnetic film media shows remarkable improvement of playback performance comparing with existing LTO Ultrium 3 data cartridge and DLTtape S4® data cartridge products*2. Signal to Noise ratio increased by 5.8 - 5.9 dB at a linear density of 337 kFCI, and a pulse width of an isolated signal, PW50, decreased by 32 - 34%. It is confirmed that these characteristics of high SNR and high resolution come from drastic reduction of medium noise by simultaneous pursuit of fine structure of nano-granular film and suitable magnetic properties such like high coercivity (348 kA/m).
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