Traditional hard drives can last anywhere from a few months to a few years, with the latter being more likely. SSD’s can last longer thanks to their lack of moving parts, but they still probably aren’t something you would want to include in a time capsule. Now researchers in France are working on a drive that they hope will last as much as 10 million years.
The sapphire “hard disk” prototype has been created by ANDRA, the French nuclear waste management agency. The disk, which is one of a kind, cost $25,000 to make, and stores information with platinum-based etchings. The reason for this? To warn future generations of nuclear waste buried in the ground.
The data stored on the sapphire disk contains 40,000 miniaturized (not digital) pages, and the only thing future archaeologists will need to read them will be a microscope. ANDRA researchers tested the disk’s durability by immersing it in acid to simulate the ageing process. The disk should last at least 1 million years, the researchers stated. In fact, they hope to prove a durability of 10 million years very soon.
Source: Science Now
Image: Hard Drive by BigStock