Sure, we've seen 1TB discs before, but instead of complicating things with holograms and the like, a research team at the University of Central Florida has taken a different tactic and developed some advances in laser technology that could actually make disc drives cheaper and more portable -- along with the obvious benefits of 1TB of storage and speedier read/write times. Unfortunately, we left our PhDs at home today, so we really haven't the foggiest idea how this all works, but the gist of the idea seems to be the fancy dual laser wavelengths being used, allowing for sharper imaging and recording. These lasers can interact with 3D materials -- such as the multiple layers on a disc, or even a storage "cube" -- without interference from the solid material, providing for more durable and more dense storage. To switch between reading and writing is only a matter of applying more power, and the simplicity of the method means that cheaper lasers could possibly be used in the system -- a far cry from the current blue laser manufacturing problems being experienced by Blu-ray and HD DVD formats. We're not exactly sure if the drive will be able to store 1TB to existing DVD discs, or if a new media will need to be produced -- we're guessing the latter -- but while we're sure commercialization of this technology is a ways off, it's nice to see what a few nerds in a college science lab can pull off while waiting around for multi-billion dollar corporations to get a 50GB drive out the door.

[Via Slashdot]

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UCF mad scientists squeeze 1TB of data onto single DVD