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MIT Scientists Achieve Molecular Data Storage Breakthrough

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supramolecule, illustration

Illustration of a new supramolecule made of graphene and zinc atoms which researchers at MIT and several German institutes have used to successfully store binary data at near room temperature.

Credit: Christine Daniloff / MIT News

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers have developed a method for storing data on individual molecules at room temperature, which could lead to a 1,000-fold improvement in storage density. The method was demonstrated on a type of "supramolecule," which was created by binding graphene molecules to zinc atoms. "Each molecule is around one nanometer in dimension and hence this will let us achieve storage as high as 1,000 terabytes per square inch," says MIT's Jagadeesh Moodera.

The researchers were able to get the molecules to store binary data by placing them between two electrodes, which were used to change the conductivity of the molecules between two states, representing the 1 and 0 of binary code. "The idea here is to be able to have more and more information available in your portable pocket device," says MIT's Karthik Raman. "Hence if such a work can make it to technology, with the existing size of our portable device we can store 1,000 times more information in the form of documents or music or high quality video files."

The researchers believe their work could eventually lead to quantum computing and quantum bit memory.

From TPM Idea Lab 
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Abstracts Copyright © 2013 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


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