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Millipede comes out of the lab

PhysOrg is reporting that IBM Zurich is showing off its Millipede storage device at CeBIT. For those unfamiliar with this device it uses cantilever arms to read & write a polymer medium.

As the pits that the cantilevers read & write are ~10nm in diameter it is definitely a nanoscale device. The storage density is approximately 1 terabit per sq. inch. That capacity in that size implies that one should be able to fit the contents of a entire college education into a handheld device.

5 Responses to “Millipede comes out of the lab”

  1. akhavr Says:

    If only things would be different…

    Quantum Technology on Alpha-C:H Film. Modeling Aspect. J. of Chemical Vapor Deposition., 1997, v 5, No 4, p. 298-309.

    The actual work was done before 1994…

  2. RobertBradbury Says:

    Re:If only things would be different…

    Is the point that denser storage methods have been proposed? If it isn't then I must be missing the point.

    Of course we know of Drexler's classical proposal for partially fluorinated polyethylene tape (Nanosystems Sec. 12.6.4, pg 365) which manages > 1021 bits/cm3. But we are quite a way from having the technology to construct a real device to read and write the tape. The important thing from my perspective regarding the Millipede is that it is *real*.

  3. vik Says:

    And the real link is…

    I dunno where, but here's the writeup in Tom's Hardware: 23.html

    Vik :v)

  4. akhavr Says:

    Re:If only things would be different…

    Don't know details – it was my father's project ( I recall that they used STM and diamondoid surface and produced the proof-of-concept device that worked under high vacuum (about the same time the IBM showcased their logo made of single atoms). We've had ideas how to do this under normall pressure, but the project was quickly classified by Russia and, finally, we've not got paid for it. So.. If only things would be different, that'd be us who presented the working device :)

  5. vkhavr Says:

    Re:If only things would be different…

    Please, look the article: E.Sheka, V.D.Khavryutchenko, E.A.Nikitina – Quantum Technology on alpha-C:H Film. Modeling Aspect. – Phys. Low-Dim. Struct. 1996, No 11/12, p.65-80. There are quantumchemical simulation of process and experimental results like quantum dots, field transistor and so on. The samples were stable at home environment more then 1/2 year.

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