Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
  Space Travel News  




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



TECH SPACE
A chemical solution to shrink digital data storage
by Staff Writers
Cleveland OH (SPX) Jun 27, 2017


CWRU chemists developed a space-saving method to store digital data optically, using four-symbol, or quaternary code. The four symbols are the absence of color and three colors - fluorescent green, ultramarine and cyan - produced when dyes contained in a common polymer are exposed to heat, ultraviolet light or both. Credit Emily Pentzer

Chemists at Case Western Reserve University have found a way to possibly store digital data in half the space current systems require.

From supercomputers to smartphones, the amount of data people generate and collect continues to grow exponentially, and the need to store all that information grows with it.

Computers and other digital devices operate and store data using a binary code, meaning two symbols--typically the numerals 0 and 1-- represent information. To reduce storage space, engineers have traditionally used existing technology but made it smaller.

For example, a compact disc is made with a red laser and a Blu-ray disc with a blue, more focused, laser that reduces the size of the symbols and the space between them, increasing data density.

But according to a new study published in the Journal of Materials Chemistry C., researchers at Case Western Reserve demonstrate how commonly used polymer films containing two dyes can optically store data in a quaternary (four-symbol) code, potentially requiring about half as much space.

"We're using chemistry instead of engineering to address data storage, but it's really complementary to what engineers are doing," said Emily Pentzer, assistant professor of chemistry at Case Western Reserve and study author. She worked with PhD students Peiran Wei and Bowen Li and Research Assistant Al de Leon on the project.

How it works
To take advantage of the quaternary storage, computer programs would need to be written in quaternary code instead of binary code, which Pentzer said would be easy with the system they used.

Instead of numerals, the optical-storage system uses the absence of color and three colors produced by the dyes as the symbols representing information.

The study
The researchers loaded a small amount--less than .4 percent by weight--of the two dye molecules into a flexible sheet of poly(methyl methacrylate), a polymer film called PMMA. PMMA is clear and colorless in ambient light and temperature.

One dye, cyano-substituted oligo(p-phenyene vinylene) fluoresces green when exposed to heat. The second dye, o-nitrobenzyl ester of benzoic acid, fluoresces ultramarine when exposed to ultraviolet light. When the overlapping dyes are exposed to both heat and UV light, they fluoresce as cyan.

Pentzer's team wrote code by laying metal or wood templates over the dye-containing film, then applying heat and ultraviolet light. They cut their templates and applied code using facilities at Case Western Reserve's Larry Sears and Sally Zlotnick Sears think[box].

Results and next steps
The circular symbols in the template were each 300 micrometers across, with 200 micrometers between them. The code proved durable, remaining legible even after the film had been rolled, bent, written on with permanent marker, submerged in boiling water and half the surface had been rubbed away with sandpaper.

The team is now investigating the use of specialized lasers to shrink the spatial resolution and therefore increase the data density (think CD vs. Blu-ray).

They are also investigating whether a third dye can be added that responds to different stimuli and remains distinct from the other two. If so, the colorless film, plus all the color combinations available, would allow the research team to store data using a septenary, or seven-symbol code, further shrinking storage.

Research Report

TECH SPACE
New ways of representing information could transform digital technology
Washington DC (SPX) Jun 08, 2017
Many people who use computers and other digital devices are aware that all the words and images displayed on their monitors boil down to a sequence of ones and zeros. But few likely appreciate what is behind those ones and zeros: microscopic arrays of "magnetic moments" (imagine tiny bar magnets with positive and negative poles). When aligned in parallel in ferromagnetic materials such as iron, ... read more

Related Links
Case Western Reserve University
Space Technology News - Applications and Research


Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

TECH SPACE
TECH SPACE
University Students Mine for Water at NASA's Mars Ice Challenge

NASA, French Space Agency Express Commitment to Joint Exploration

Martian Crater Provides Reminder of Apollo Moonwalk

MAVEN's top 10 discoveries at Mars

TECH SPACE
Russian aerospace firm to cooperate with China on Lunar exploration missions

New NELIOTA project detects flashes from lunar impacts

Cube Quest Challenge Team Spotlight: Cislunar Explorers

Winning plans for CubeSats to the Moon

TECH SPACE
King of the Gods: Jupiter Dated to Be Oldest Planet in the Solar System

New Horizons Team Digs into New Data on Next Flyby Target

A whole new Jupiter with first science results from Juno

First results from Juno show cyclones and massive magnetism

TECH SPACE
New Hunt for Earth-like Planets

NASA releases Kepler Survey Catalog with 100s of new exoplanet candidates

Astronomers Explain Formation of Seven Exoplanets Around TRAPPIST-1

OU astrophysicist identifies composition of Earth-size planets in TRAPPIST-1 system

TECH SPACE
Kazakh man dies in fire after Russian rocket launch

NASA and Industry Team Successfully Test Orion Launch Abort Motor

India's Kerosene-Based Semi-Cryogenic Engine to Be Flight Test Ready by 2021

Russia's Next Carrier-Based Rocket Launch Planned for 2018 - Khrunichev Center

TECH SPACE
China's cargo spacecraft completes second docking with space lab

China to launch four more probes before 2021

New broadcasting satellite fails to enter preset orbit

China launches remote-sensing micro-nano satellites

TECH SPACE
Are NEOs Coming to Earth?

ESA boss urges action on 'ticking timebombs' in Earth orbit

B612 Creates Asteroid Institute

Rosetta finds comet connection to Earth's atmosphere




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement