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Fujitsu Develops Optical Element for Thermal Assisted Magnetic Recording

Breakthrough Will Facilitate Implementation of Terabit per square inch Recording Technology

November 28, 2006

Fujitsu Europe Limited, one of the world’s leading suppliers of innovative computer products including hard disk drives, peripherals and biometric security solutions, today announced that Fujitsu has developed a multi-layered optical element for thermal assisted magnetic recording. Using this optical element, engineers were able to achieve a sub-hundred nanometre (nm) optical spot size, which is considered an enabling element for the successful deployment of one terabit per square inch recording technology for hard disk drives. This groundbreaking development was presented during the International Symposium on Optical Memory (ISOM) in Japan this past October.

In the Personal Computing (PC) and Consumer Electronics (CE) markets, demand for high capacity products is continuing to escalate. To address today’s needs, the Hard Disk Drive (HDD) industry has implemented perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR) technology in order to increase the storage capacity of hard disk drives. The merging of optical thermal assist and perpendicular recording is of high interest to the HDD industry, as it enables manufacturers to reach capacities around ten times greater than what is now possible. As research and development for Terabit recording continues, thermal assisted magnetic recording is considered to be one of the crucial technologies. For this method to work, it is essential to have a very small optical spot with high optical transmission efficiency on the recording media. Successful implementation of thermal assisted recording technology also requires the following criteria:

  • Optical elements must be incorporated into the HDD magnetic head manufacturing process.
  • Output beam size needs to be focused to an extremely small size to achieve the very high density recording at 1 Terabit per square inch.
  • High optical transmission efficiency is required to heat the recording spot to allow easier recording on high coercivity magnetic media.

Using a specially designed optical element, Fujitsu was able to attain a spot size of 88nm x 60nm with 17% optical efficiency. In this optical element, a multi-layered structure with an optical transmission layer was adopted. Fujitsu is the world’s first company to achieve a sub-hundred nanometre optical spot with a layered optical element.

“This achievement realized by Fujitsu with the multi-layered optical element is an exciting milestone for high density recording development, as well as for the storage industry as a whole,” said Georg Dietsch, Director Storage Products Group EMEA. “With this accomplishment, Fujitsu is paving the way for HDD manufacturers to effectively meet the demands of PC and CE vendors for ultra-high capacity HDD products.”

In order to attain terabit class recording, a combination of leading-edge technologies are required, and Fujitsu remains at the forefront with such accomplishments. During 2005-06, several new breakthroughs were announced in Japan, including: advancements in patterned media technology (June ’05); a new lubricant that allows for lower flying height (April ’06); and improvements in head material development (August ’06). With this latest achievement in thermal assisted magnetic recording, Fujitsu continues to demonstrate its leadership in technological innovations designed to improve recording density.

Note: This optical element work has been done as a part of the "Terabyte optical storage technology" project of the Optoelectronic Industry and Technology Development Association (OITDA) and The Ministry of Economy Trade and Industry of Japan (METI) in 2002, and as a part of the project of The New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) and METI since 2003.

About Fujitsu

Fujitsu is a leading provider of information and communication technology (ICT)-based business solutions for the global marketplace. With approximately 170,000 employees supporting customers in over 100 countries, Fujitsu combines a worldwide corps of systems and services experts with highly reliable computing and communications products and advanced microelectronics to deliver added value to customers. Headquartered in Tokyo, Fujitsu Limited (TSE:6702) reported consolidated revenues of 4.5 trillion yen (US$55 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2011. For more information, please see: www.fujitsu.com.

About Fujitsu Europe Limited

Operating in Europe/Middle East/Africa, Fujitsu Europe Limited is a market leading provider of document image scanners for professional desktop, workgroup and high volume production environments; Enterprise SCSI, FCAL and SAS, and Mobile ATA and SATA hard disk drives; high capacity external 2.5-inch drives; KVM devices including switches, CAT-5 extenders and pull-out drawers; biometric authentication sensors as well as dot-matrix printers.Established in the United Kingdom in 1981, Fujitsu Europe Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of the global electronics giant Fujitsu Limited and has its head office in the UK as well as subsidiary offices in Germany, Italy and Spain. http://emea.fujitsu.com/felg

Fujitsu Europe Limited Group

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Company:Fujitsu Europe Limited Group

Date: 28 November, 2006