Monday, 23 November 2015 13:59

Fujifilm extends BaFe technology for LTO7 cartridge


Fujifilm's new LTO7 cartridge uses an improved version of the company's BaFe technology to achieve capacity and longevity requirements.

The new Fujifilm LTO7 data cartridge provides up to 15TB of storage with transfer speeds up to 750Mbps for compressed data thanks to the 32 magnetic heads in the tape drive. This means the entire contents can be restored in 5.6 hours.

The corresponding figures for uncompressed data are 6TB and 300Mbps.

Fujifilm first applied BaFe particles to LTO tape in 2012.

The new LTO7 cartridge doubles the data density of LTO6 thanks to the development of 'nanocubic' technology for increased precision in dispersing the particles, more consistent magnetic properties, a thinner magnetic layer, and a reduction in the number of minor defects.

Where the improvement from LTO5 to LTO6 was 170% for capacity and 110% for transfer speed, LTO7 provides 240% more capacity and 190% greater transfer speed than LTO6.

BaFe technology has been shown to store data reliably for more than thirty years, the company said.

There is still room for further improvements in the storage density of commercial tape cartridges. Earlier this year, Fujifilm and IBM demonstrated a prototype 220GB (uncompressed) data cartridge using BaFe magnetic particles. That is the highest capacity in the world for coated magnetic tape, according to Fujifilm.

Growing data volumes (eg, from ultra-high definition video and IoT devices) and the accumulation of cold (ie, not recently accessed) data call for reliable and cost-effective long-term storage, and this has resulted in renewed interest in magnetic tape.

Depending on the parameters, the total cost of LTO7 storage can be less than one-sixth of that for hard drives. And since the tapes are generally kept offline, there is a reduced risk of data corruption or loss due to system failures, viruses and cyber attacks.

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Stephen Withers

Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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