Plastics and data carriers: Holography as a data storage medium of the future
Holography is something we know above all from pictures, in which the eye is misled into believing it is seeing something three-dimensionally. The most recent edition of the “research” magazine, published by Bayer AG (D-51368 Leverkusen), has a report on how the company´s scientists are using the principle of holography to produce a data storage medium of the future. With innovative plastics, namely photoaddressable polymers (PAP), they are aiming to achieve a storage capacity equivalent to 1,500 CDs on a single data carrier.

Nearly all the components needed for three-dimensional data storage were already available, but one thing was missing – a suitable data carrier. Not any more. Scientists from Bayer´s Central Research Division in Leverkusen came up with the solution: they developed a light-sensitive plastic. The digital information is translated as laser light intensity and imprinted into the material. The side chains of the polymer orientate themselves differently and thereby change the optical properties of the plastics at this point.

IBM and Bayer want to jointly use this material as a three-dimensional holographic data storage system in the form of so-called Holo-CD. Banks and film studios, who still need warehouses to store their enormous amounts of data, will be able in a few years to store it on just a few Holo-CDs.

Further details in “research” magazine (German): PIE-No. 42989.
31.12.1998 [18275]
Published on 31.12.1998

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