Keywords optical data storage, magneto-optical drives
Start Date: 01-JUN-89 / Duration: 60 months + 18 months
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Rewritable drives are expected to become the major source of revenue for optical system manufacturers within the next five years. Intensive work has been done by the consortium during its first period of activity to establish a European technology for optical media, heads and drives. The baselines of this programme consist in the development of two magneto-optical drives: a 3.5" drive with a capability higher than 200 Mbyte, and a 5.25" drive of 5 Gbyte.
Medium-term goals (1989-92)
A 128 Mbyte 3.5" magneto-optical drive, 1" high and ISO compatible, was presented at the ESPRIT conference in November 1992. A faster version, achieving a 600 kbyte/s data transfer rate, was achieved in 1993.
RE-TM based 90 mm magneto-optical media have been developed that conform to the ISO-10090 standard. Glass-based and plastic-based media are now commercially available. O-ROM capabilities, allowing the pre-embossing of non-alterable commercial software on the rewritable disks, have been developed and transferred to production.
In order to assess extendibility towards next-generation high-performance systems (including magnetic field-modulated direct overwrite), the upgradability of RE-TM media has been investigated. The underlying RE-TM technology allows extension to next-generation data-storage systems.
A magneto-optical garnet medium, optimised for low wavelength, has been developed, and 3.5" magneto-optical discs with grooved glass substrate, bismuth-substituted garnet and reflector have been produced and tested.
Wafers containing magneto-optical integrated heads have also been produced, demonstrating the feasibility of the technology.
The project was continued in MAGNOPT II, project 7801.
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MAGNOPT - 2013 + 7801, December 1993
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html version of synopsis by Nick Cook