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NCSU's Fingernail-Size Chip Can Hold 1TB

timothy posted about 5 years ago | from the proof-of-concept dept.

Data Storage 227

CWmike writes "Engineers from North Carolina State University have created a new fingernail-size chip that can hold 1 trillion bytes (a terabyte) of data. They said their nanostructured Ni-MgO system can store up to 20 high-definition DVDs or 250 million pages of text, 'far exceeding the storage capacities of today's computer memory systems.' Using the process of selective doping, in which an impurity is added to a material whose properties consequently change, the engineers worked at nanoscale and added metal nickel to magnesium oxide, a ceramic. The resulting material contained clusters of nickel atoms no bigger than 10 square nanometers — a pinhead has a diameter of 1 million nanometers. The discovery represents a 90% size reduction compared with today's techniques, and an advancement that could boost computer storage capacity. 'Instead of making a chip that stores 20 gigabytes, you have one that can handle one terabyte, or 50 times more data,' said the team's leader, Jagdish 'Jay' Narayan, director of the National Science Foundation Center for Advanced Materials and Smart Structures at the university."

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Finger nail-sized chip? (4, Funny)

vertinox (846076) | about 5 years ago | (#29840413)

Are we talking in units of man hands or lady hands?

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (5, Funny)

clyde_cadiddlehopper (1052112) | about 5 years ago | (#29840439)

Mama was apparently wrong about nailbyting.

Attention Windows Clickarounds (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840809)

Yeah i'm talking to you. The wannabe computer programmer who thinks they are good at computers because they can click around the computer enough times and find the reboot button and 'fix' an inherently flawed windows system. You think you're cool because you can pirate photoshop but not know anything about it, get Microsoft Office for free but have the literacy of a 1st grader when writing a paper, and get a copy of Norton Anti-virus because your inherently flawed system is useless without Administrative privileges. Get a clue, you are not smart, you are just a corporate sheep for a company that will bury you if you ever tried to write any software that did anything remotely useful. You are a clickaround and all you know if your ugly gray existence that is Windows.

Want the sourcecode to windows vista?

head -n 1000000 /dev/random > Windows.com

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (3, Funny)

fast turtle (1118037) | about 5 years ago | (#29840825)

The Trim Command works much better as it doesn't fragment the file system as badly as nailbyting does. So no, mama wasn't wrong

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840847)

Learn to spell moran.

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840993)

<joke/>
w.
o.
o.
s.
h.
you.

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29841139)

Did you not see that the post you replied to had a spelling error ("moran")? Maybe the "w. o. o. s. h." belongs to you!

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (1)

CecilPL (1258010) | about 5 years ago | (#29841199)

Get a brain!

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (5, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#29840471)

Are we talking in units of man hands or lady hands?

I asked a female co-worker to help me compare, and she obliged......by flipping me off. At least I got a good look at her nail. The things we nerds endure for science.
     

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840961)

That reminds me of a true story.

A few years ago I received my first PDA phone. It was HTC through AT&T and it did have a camera. I went through the office asking people for a picture for my phone. Explaining that when they dialed me, I could see their picture instead of the phone number. I went through about 20 offices and cubicles on my break to get those pictures.

They ALL GAVE ME THE FINGER. Every single one of those comical bastards. No prompting, No hesitation. It was, "Can I get a picture of you for my phone?". They all turned around and flipped me off. Women as well as men.

Even the owner of the company was there that day. He flipped me off too.

Could it have been me? Nah.

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (5, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#29841117)

It was memories of the Vista you installed on all PC's.

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840743)

the real question is:

are we talking about european hands or african hands?

Re:Finger nail-sized chip? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840977)

That is an important question. As you know european hands are migratory, and this has caused me a great deal of trouble...

Trollin'. (0)

Z34107 (925136) | about 5 years ago | (#29840423)

...have created a new fingernail-size chip that can hold 1 trillion bytes (a terabyte) of data.

A trillion bytes is a terabyte? You best be trollin', summary.

Re:Trollin'. (3, Informative)

NoYob (1630681) | about 5 years ago | (#29840497)

...have created a new fingernail-size chip that can hold 1 trillion bytes (a terabyte) of data.

A trillion bytes is a terabyte? You best be trollin', summary.

Uh, yeah! [wikipedia.org]

Re:Trollin'. (1, Funny)

Triela (773061) | about 5 years ago | (#29840553)

A trillion bytes?

1000000000000 b / 640 kb

That's enough for over 1.5 million people!!

Re:Trollin'. (4, Informative)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | about 5 years ago | (#29840581)

TB:1,000,000,000,000
TiB:1,099,511,627,776

Different notations as to whats a Terabyte, the second one being the binary notation.

But more importantly, the summary* doesn't say which notation they're using, but because they say trillion we can assume the former. Why is that important? Look at the numbers.Thats 99 Gigs of difference.

*(Because I wouldn't read the full article)

Re:Trollin'. (1)

selven (1556643) | about 5 years ago | (#29840853)

TB is used for both. Operating systems prefer 1.1 trillion while hard drive makers prefer 1 trillion because it makes their stuff seem 10% bigger.

Re:Trollin'. (5, Informative)

maxfresh (1435479) | about 5 years ago | (#29840905)

The confusion probably arises because not all countries and languages use the same terminology for large numbers.

There are two naming conventions in general use, short-scale, and long-scale. In the short-scale countries such as the US, UK, etc, Trillion = 10^12, but in the long-scale countries, Trillion = 10^18. Obviously, if you are in a long-scale country, a Trillion (10^18) bytes is a (10^6) times more than a Terabyte (10^12 bytes). You can see this article for more on short and long scale: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_and_short_scales [wikipedia.org]

Re:Trollin'. (3, Informative)

Craig Davison (37723) | about 5 years ago | (#29841035)

It's safe to say now that "trillion", as an English word, means 10^12 in English-speaking places.

Re:Trollin'. (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | about 5 years ago | (#29840907)

No. Because if they were any serious, they would be consistent in their meaning anyway, and, as it is standard in the storage industry, and as a SI unit, use TiB, if they meant TiB. And else TB. Period. No need to discuss it. Because that is all and everything.

Re:Trollin'. (2, Insightful)

644bd346996 (1012333) | about 5 years ago | (#29840981)

The difference between one ISO terabyte and 1 TiB is relatively smaller than the variance among normal fingernails.

Dang it! (4, Funny)

mhajicek (1582795) | about 5 years ago | (#29840427)

I'm going to have to buy The White Album again!

Re:Dang it! (3, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#29840613)

I'm going to have to buy The White Album again!

I just bleach my shaded albums.
   

damn (2, Funny)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | about 5 years ago | (#29840431)

that is tiny.
If that had been available earlier this year, I wouldv had it implanted :D

Re:damn (2, Funny)

Rei (128717) | about 5 years ago | (#29840449)

Implanted? Just like that? Are you one of these people [xkcd.com] ? ;)

Re:damn (1)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | about 5 years ago | (#29840869)

hahaha
I had an opportunity earlier this year, I considered having a memory upgrade or a stylus inserted.
I made a journal entry about it here when it happened, its still makes me wince.

Re:damn (1)

wjh31 (1372867) | about 5 years ago | (#29840499)

you only got 1TB in your chip? man you should see all the HD 4D holo video i can fit on my Exabyte implant.

Signed:
Time Traveler from 2030

Re:damn (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#29840541)

that is tiny. If that had been available earlier this year, I wouldv had it implanted

Do you by chance drive a flying saucer?
     

Re:damn (1)

Culture20 (968837) | about 5 years ago | (#29840665)

If that had been available earlier this year, I wouldv had it implanted :D

Until we hit the Moore's Law wall, implanting anything will result in multiple surgeries for upgrades or useless tech stuck in your body.

Re:damn (1)

notmyusualnickname (1221732) | about 5 years ago | (#29841019)

I've thought about some sort of biologically inert sheathing that would allow for out-patient (or in-store) type cut-and-replace upgrades, otherwise digging audiovisual chips out would get unnecessarily messy as the speed of improvements increased. (Either that or early adopters would be stuck with inferior systems for a while, and that would never do...)

Re:damn (1)

Hucko (998827) | about 5 years ago | (#29841261)

I'm getting LightPeak connections installed next year.

Re:damn (1)

mhajicek (1582795) | about 5 years ago | (#29841135)

The thing to do would be to just implant an interface device. The hardware you interface with will be much easier to replace that way.

What is the ETA? (3, Insightful)

mr_stinky_britches (926212) | about 5 years ago | (#29840451)

Sounds promising, but how many months/years/decades before we can reasonably expect to see this used on a wide scale?

Re:What is the ETA? (2, Insightful)

RabidMoose (746680) | about 5 years ago | (#29840473)

Same as always, "three to five years". (I'm just guessing. Of course I haven't RTFA.)

Re:What is the ETA? (1)

Viper23 (172755) | about 5 years ago | (#29840501)

Not to mention, this a lab chip. How long before it can survive being in a consumer environment?

Re:What is the ETA? (3, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#29840527)

Sounds promising, but how many months/years/decades before we can reasonably expect to see this used on a wide scale?

Don't worry, all flying cars will have at least one. Further, the next version of Duke Nukem will ship on such a chip.
     

The good news (5, Funny)

spun (1352) | about 5 years ago | (#29840663)

It will be commercially available by January. The bad news is, this is a write only memory device.

Re:The good news (1)

veganboyjosh (896761) | about 5 years ago | (#29840985)

Write only?

So you can write to it, but you can't read it? Sounds about as useful as skywriting, sparklers, and messages left in below-low-tide beach sand would be for long term storage.

Re:The good news (5, Funny)

OnlyPostsWhilstDrunk (1605753) | about 5 years ago | (#29840999)

Yeah, it's for classified documents.

Re:The good news (5, Funny)

fractalspace (1241106) | about 5 years ago | (#29841183)

Workaround is to make a backup of your data before writing to this device, just in case you need it again.

Re:The good news (1)

TheLostSamurai (1051736) | about 5 years ago | (#29841005)

It will be commercially available by January. The bad news is, this is a write only memory device.

Wow, that sucks. I was hoping I could read the data after I wrote it.

Re:The good news (1)

riskeetee (1039912) | about 5 years ago | (#29841011)

I'm not sure which is funnier, the parent post or that it got modded "informative." LOL

Re:The good news (1)

spun (1352) | about 5 years ago | (#29841201)

"Write only memory" is such a hoary old joke, I'm surprised it got modded up at all. I'm doubly surprised it got modded informative. I'm triply surprised that some people have responded as if I was actually serious.

*sigh*

Modded 'informative'??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29841033)

Moderators, something just went 'whoosh' over your heads.

Re:The good news (1)

Idbar (1034346) | about 5 years ago | (#29841051)

So, is this some sort of Schrodinger's box? You write the data, but you just don't know if is there or not?

Re:The good news (1)

Therefore I am (1284262) | about 5 years ago | (#29841059)

That's not bad news at all. The entire world is waiting for a reliable way of storing massive amounts of data on a permanent basis. If the report is based on truth then it might well be the answer to the vexing problems of lost data.... Counter-intuitively,if they make it too small it will be easy to lose the chip - back to square one!

Re:The good news (1)

maharb (1534501) | about 5 years ago | (#29841189)

Parent is modded informative, rofl.

Re:The good news (1)

eyepeepackets (33477) | about 5 years ago | (#29841195)

Well, I thought that was pretty damn funny: The guy who marked you informative must be having a very sarcastic day.

Re:The good news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29841249)

Thank goodness. I've needed a new /dev/null for a while now. The old one was getting full.

Re:What is the ETA? (1)

TheKidWho (705796) | about 5 years ago | (#29840687)

Probably when existing techniques can not be scaled down anymore economically.

But.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840457)

How many Libraries of Congress can it store?

Re:But.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840691)

1/100th

There is no chip. (5, Informative)

victim (30647) | about 5 years ago | (#29840475)

They have made a material which could if you designed a suitable chip and associated circuitry, and figured out how to manufacture it at large scale, would let you store a terabyte of data on a fingernail sized chip.

The whoever wrote the article title should be embarrassed, as should timothy for propagating it.

Re:There is no chip. (1)

Kjella (173770) | about 5 years ago | (#29840561)

Two words: Page hits.

Re:There is no chip. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840697)

Two better words: Huge tits.

I even re-used a lot of your letters...

Re:There is no chip. (1)

popo (107611) | about 5 years ago | (#29840721)

Two better words: Small chips.

I guess we all get excited about different things.

Re:There is no chip. (2, Funny)

kaizokuace (1082079) | about 5 years ago | (#29840941)

It's not the size that matters. It's how you use it ;p

Re:There is no chip. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840775)

smoke that joint

Re:There is no chip. (4, Informative)

Phat_Tony (661117) | about 5 years ago | (#29840915)

I found an even more impressive material, and I can already manufacture it myself in bulk.

Each base of DNA can be AGT or C, so that's 2 bits worth of data per base pair.

A terabyte = 1.1259E+15 bits, so a terabyte of DNA is 5.6295E+14 base pairs.

For mass, [5.6295E+14 base pairs] x [660 daltons per base pair] = [3.71547E+17 daltons] = 6.169686786411827E-7 grams = .62 micrograms per terabyte.

That's smaller than my fingernail by a pretty good margin. In fact, my actual fingernail already contains maybe a petabyte of storage.

Unlike their new super material, I've already developed (well, OK, discovered. Well, no, read about other people discovering) techniques for reading, writing, and copying data with this storage medium.

However, like them, I haven't worked out any computer interface yet.

Re:There is no chip. (1)

icannotthinkofaname (1480543) | about 5 years ago | (#29841153)

$ dd if=Phat_Tony/dna of=Phat_Tony.iso
. . .
*at least five years later*
Okay, then, let's see what we can make of this data.

Re:There is no chip. (3, Interesting)

shadowofwind (1209890) | about 5 years ago | (#29841093)

Years ago I worked a product that had an IC feature that could be manufactured reliably 99.99% of the time. For a real device with millions of such features that averages to almost zero yield, and this problem was not overcome. For some technologies the manufacturing yield hurdle can be overcome, for others it can't be. So although seeing a small number of memory cells work correctly is interesting and worthwhile, by itself that doesn't tell us whether we will ever see this technology in an actual product.

Great , Now The N.S.A. Data Mining Project (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840485)

of Google's 10 million servers [slashdot.org] can be
carried around in a cell phone.

Yours In Novorossiysk,
Kilgore T.

Moore's Law meets Bohr's Atom (1)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | about 5 years ago | (#29840503)

It had to happen eventually. Whether or not this is the actual limit, deponent answereth not.

Is this a real writable chip? (3, Insightful)

dschuetz (10924) | about 5 years ago | (#29840521)

Or just a demonstration of an artificial structure with resolution / density that'd permit 1 TB in whatever their size is?

I didn't see anything in the article that leads me to believe it's an actual storage device. Come to think of it, I'm not sure it's even necessarily a "fingernail-sized" chip they made, just that if you scaled their research to that size it'd hold 1 TB.

Any information other than this incredibly vague article? (I swear, more and more frequently we're seeing useless articles that say even less than the press release they're drawn from. And aren't the press releases often DESIGNED to be vague and over-promising, possibly to attract more research dollars?) Be nice if we'd just see their actual research, or a rough draft of a paper, or even just a frank interview with the geeks involved.

Re:Is this a real writable chip? (4, Informative)

John Hasler (414242) | about 5 years ago | (#29840603)

The actual press release does not claim that they "made a chip". That's a fabrication of the ComputerWorld reporter.

Re:Is this a real writable chip? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29841221)

That's a fabrication of the ComputerWorld reporter.

If the reported fabricated it, why wouldn't he report about his chip then?

Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840525)

Now I can store more porn which is the reason you need a new hard disk.

I wonder... (1, Interesting)

allknowingfrog (1661721) | about 5 years ago | (#29840533)

I wonder when personal computers will catch up with cell phones and mp3 players - any smaller, and we'll just lose them.

"A man with a tape recorder up his nose" . . . (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 5 years ago | (#29840535)

. . . so now I know how the Monty Python crew pulled off that trick . . . this music was stored on his fingernail!

I understand we're geeks and all (1)

Viper23 (172755) | about 5 years ago | (#29840551)

but:

The process would allow them to develop a new generation of ceramic engines able to withstand twice the temperatures of normal engines. The engines could potentially achieve fuel economy of 80 miles per gallon, Narayan said.

Could we at least have mentioned that this technology could potentially double the fuel efficiency of car engines???

Re:I understand we're geeks and all (1)

icannotthinkofaname (1480543) | about 5 years ago | (#29841169)

Is that sort of like doubling the clock speed of a CPU?

Just trying to get a computer analogy out there, so that I can understand what you're talking about with respect to cars.

Terabyte problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29840571)

Gotta have ten bytes I have stored in a short two secs time in that terabyte of data. What do I do to get to it if it isn't super-fast recalled? Like speed...there is a limit to storage cap with speed..............

Performance? (3, Insightful)

saleenS281 (859657) | about 5 years ago | (#29840597)

It's great that you can store 1TB on it, but what does the performance look like? If it takes me 4 hours to pull a gig of data off of it, it's nearly useless. I could see some very, very corner cases where you need to store data indefinitely, and would be able to recover it with no timeline attached, but that's awfully rare nowadays. I want to see IOPS and access time ;) I'm also wondering how you would even read and write data. They seem to have left that detail out.

nanotech on its way (4, Interesting)

dissy (172727) | about 5 years ago | (#29840623)

While they are light on details, the article implies this is a long term storage system (IE a flash chip replacement)

One would think creating RAM with a similar density would be possible as well.

I've used a super computer that had 74 TB of main memory, but clearly is something one can not afford nor fit in the home, to put it mildly. In a few years, will we have 1tb dimms at home? That would be sweet.

Even lacking that, a 1tb flash-like chip (not as in technology, but as in purpose/use) is still a huge improvement.

Let's just hope it doesn't go the way of the 100tb optical discs that are 'going into production within a year' for the last 10 years.

On a happier note, just imagine the reactions the RIAA/MPAA lawyers would have to such a thing existing!
"Now all of your 'IP' fits on a nine finger-nail-sized set!"

Re:nanotech on its way (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | about 5 years ago | (#29840747)

Yeah, I mean, I haven't used a super computer before, but I did use a Mac Pro once.

I'll be happy when I can Grab a Dell with those specs at a decent price.

Selective doping works well... (1)

BobMcD (601576) | about 5 years ago | (#29840641)

...athletes have been making millions that way for years!

Wait!!! (4, Funny)

Dunbal (464142) | about 5 years ago | (#29840661)

can store up to 20 high-definition DVDs or 250 million pages of text

      Wait, how many Libraries of Congress is that??? Now I'm totally confused, you keep switching the units on me!

      On second thoughts, it can probably store 1 copy of Windows 8.

Re:Wait!!! (1)

jnaujok (804613) | about 5 years ago | (#29840827)

That's 0.01 LOC's.

You're Welcome.

Re:Wait!!! (1)

colfer (619105) | about 5 years ago | (#29840899)

DVD's store 20 GB now?

Re:Wait!!! (1)

colfer (619105) | about 5 years ago | (#29840911)

Err, I mean 50 GB?

Re:Wait!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29841053)

Yes, notice the High Definition... Blu-ray can store up to 50GB dual-layer. 25GB single layer.

Re:Wait!!! (1)

mister_playboy (1474163) | about 5 years ago | (#29841055)

high-definition DVDs

Maybe they mean HD-DVD or Blu-ray.

With this chip Windows 8 will be ready to roll out (1)

moxsam (917470) | about 5 years ago | (#29840739)

Yeah, I know that's humour from the age of floppy disks and Zee-Dee-Roms.

Can someone explain to me... (5, Insightful)

Gordo_1 (256312) | about 5 years ago | (#29840741)

how we go from the below scientific journal abstract to the Slashdot headline: "NCSU's Fingernail-Size Chip Can Hold 1TB"?

We have investigated the magnetic properties of the Ni-MgO system with an Ni concentration of 0.5 at.%. In as-grown crystals, Ni ions occupy substitutional Mg sites. Under these conditions the Ni-MgO system behaves as a perfect paramagnet. By using a controlled annealing treatment in a reducing atmosphere, we were able to induce clustering and form pure Ni precipitates in the nanometer size range. The size distribution of precipitates or nanodots is varied by changing annealing time and temperature. Magnetic properties of specimens ranging from perfect paramagnetic to ferromagnetic characteristics have been studied systematically to establish structure-property correlations. The spontaneous magnetization data for the samples, where Ni was precipitated randomly in MgO host, fits well to Bloch's T3/2-law and has been explained within the framework of spin wave theory predictions.

Seriously, do you see anything about a chip in there? Anyone? Bueller?

LoC? (3, Interesting)

swanzilla (1458281) | about 5 years ago | (#29840749)

Ten fingernails, each with 1/10 LoC capacity...the future is here, my friends.

Re:LoC? (1)

mhajicek (1582795) | about 5 years ago | (#29841207)

That's 1/100. Wait another decade.

Go Moore! (1)

hrimhari (1241292) | about 5 years ago | (#29840781)

Hey, if we multiply the capacity x size ratio by 50, does that mean that Moore's Law gets a vacation for the next, uhm... 5-6 years?

Harnessing energy from an electron's spin??!!! (5, Informative)

flajann (658201) | about 5 years ago | (#29840879)

I find this article a bit confusing, because it speaks of "harnessing the energy of a spinning electron":

"Most energy used today is harnessed through the movement of current and is limited by the amount of heat that it produces, but the energy created by the spinning of electrons produces no heat," the university state in a press release.

Anyone who knows anything at all about quantum mechanics knows that the spin of an electron is quantized and cannot change.

The Wikipedia article has this to say about spintronics:

Electrons are spin-1/2 fermions and therefore constitute a two-state system with spin "up" and spin "down". To make a spintronic device, the primary requirements are to have a system that can generate a current of spin polarized electrons comprising more of one spin species—up or down—than the other (called a spin injector), and a separate system that is sensitive to the spin polarization of the electrons (spin detector). Manipulation of the electron spin during transport between injector and detector (especially in semiconductors) via spin precession can be accomplished using real external magnetic fields or effective fields caused by spin-orbit interaction.

This makes MUCH more sense! Reporters are always notorious for getting the science wrong.

The pest of the retards unit standards. (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | about 5 years ago | (#29840881)

that can hold 1 trillion bytes (a terabyte) of data

What's the point of saying "1 trillion"? Do you honestly expect anyone on this site to not know what a terabyte is? Or what is that good for?
Because, you know how the world works: When you lower your standards, and allow dumber people to use it... Then dumber people you shall have!
But not just dumber people. A Gaussian curve of dumber people. Including some, that don't even get *that*.
So if you then continue to sustain that endless cycle, you will soon find out, that only retards you will have left.

Comparison sucks (1)

the person standing (1134789) | about 5 years ago | (#29840897)

no bigger than 10 square nanometers — a pinhead has a diameter of 1 million nanometers

Why not compare area to area: A diameter of 1 million nanometers is 1000000 ^ 2 * pi = about 3140000000000 square nanometers.

Re:Comparison sucks (1)

Jake Griffin (1153451) | about 5 years ago | (#29841061)

That, and 1 million nanometers = 1 millimeter, which is much larger than a pin head. The body of most pins is usually less than a millimeter.

Re:Comparison sucks (1)

Jake Griffin (1153451) | about 5 years ago | (#29841071)

Oh, and your equation is wrong... pi r^2, not pi d^2, so the answer would be 1/4 of 3140000000000

awesome news (1)

Icegryphon (715550) | about 5 years ago | (#29840949)

Now I will be one step closer to having a complete backup of the internet.

Warning: Recursive Content (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#29841159)

Now I will be one step closer to having a complete backup of the internet.

Won't ever fit because we store the backup on the internet.
   

The Abstract. (3, Interesting)

Jason Pollock (45537) | about 5 years ago | (#29841015)

Here is the paper's abstract:

Abstract: We have investigated the magnetic properties of the Ni-MgO system with an Ni concentration of 0.5 at.%. In as-grown crystals, Ni ions occupy substitutional Mg sites. Under these conditions the Ni-MgO system behaves as a perfect paramagnet. By using a controlled annealing treatment in a reducing atmosphere, we were able to induce clustering and form pure Ni precipitates in the nanometer size range. The size distribution of precipitates or nanodots is varied by changing annealing time and temperature. Magnetic properties of specimens ranging from perfect paramagnetic to ferromagnetic characteristics have been studied systematically to establish structure-property correlations. The spontaneous magnetization data for the samples, where Ni was precipitated randomly in MgO host, fits well to Bloch’s T3/2-law and has been explained within the framework of spin wave theory predictions.

Now, my question is, how do you store information in that? If the material is paramagnetic [wikipedia.org] , that implies it isn't stored like a disk (read/write using a magnetic field)? How are they planning on storing information in a clump of nickel atoms? (Note: I know absolutely nothing about this stuff)

Can we change the title of this post? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29841017)

Can we change the title of this post to...

NCSU's THEORETICAL Fingernail-Size Chip Can Hold 1TB

Another bogus materials-science article (4, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | about 5 years ago | (#29841063)

This is yet another of those articles where somebody did something vaguely promising in materials science [harvard.edu] , and it's immediately being touted as if it were a product.

They're not talking about a "chip" at all. The material they've produced sounds more like something that might work as a disk surface. "Under these conditions the Ni-MgO system behaves as a perfect paramagnet." It's not clear what you'd use as a read/write head, even if they can create a surface of "nanodots".

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