If water flowing uphill wasn’t enough to satisfy your need for the ever improving uses of H20 (see our previous report
) then perhaps this recent scientific announcement will float your boat. Scientist Dr. Jonathan Spanier claims that water will play an integral part in the development of future hard drives that will be able to store up to 12.8 million gigabytes of data.
The technology, which you can read more about here
, revolves around ferroelectric materials, compounds similar to the magnetic dipole moments of the Earth’s magnetic field – which causes compasses to always point North.
The miniaturisation of the ferroelectric materials has proved difficult in recent years with stability being ensured through the use of metallic electrodes. However after recent discoveries, Dr Spanier and his team were able to use hydroxyl ions, one of the main ingredients of water, to perform the job of the metal electrodes and found that they worked even better than the originals despite their nano-like size.
The impact of this technology could be widespread and currently institutes such as the Army Research Office and the Office of Naval Research are providing support. The capacity increase this technology could bring would be astronomical, with this report speculating that iPods could be able to play a different song every three minutes for over a thousand years.
The impact wouldn’t necessarily be isolated to hard drives either; ferroelectric memory could result in RAM taking the place of current hard drives, increasing their capacity for storage as well as access to data speeds.
At this moment in time no date is available about when this technology will be entering our homes. Currently scientists across America are wrestling with how to make this theoretical science practically applicable with plans to develop nano devices that exploit this new found technology.
Does the idea of nano-technology excite you? Or perhaps the thought of a 12.8 million gigabyte hard drive gets you going? Let us know what you think of this scientific discovery in the forums.