Fujitsu increases hard disk data density

Fujitsu Ltd. started shipping samples of 60G-byte 2.5-inch hard disk drives (HDDs) with an areal density of 53.2G bpsi (bits per square inch) this month, the highest density available in this HDD class, the company announced last week.

The higher the areal density, the more data a HDD can store. A 53.2G bpsi areal density means that much more data can be put into one square inch of magnetic recording space, allowing 30G bytes to be stored on a single 2.5-inch platter.

Fujitsu's MHS Series 2.5-inch HDD only needs two platters for a total capacity of 60G bytes, the company said in a statement.

Other vendors that provide 60G-byte 2.5-inch HDDs include IBM Corp. and Toshiba Corp. However, IBM's Travelstar 60GH has four platters, with an areal density of 28G bpsi, according to information on the company's Web site. Its Travelstar 40GN disk drive, which has a 34G bpsi areal density, is only available in capacities up to 40G bytes, according to the Web site. Toshiba's MK6021GAS is a 60G-byte 2.5-inch HDD with two platters, but according to the Toshiba Web site, the drive's areal density is only 48.8G bpsi, slightly lower than Fujitsu's latest development.

The 2.5-inch HDDs are commonly used for mobile devices such as notebook PCs and portable HDD subsystems. The Tokyo company also expects its products to be used in digital audio players and consumer electronics products, it said.

Fujitsu's new drive is available in capacities of 30G bytes, 40G bytes and 60G bytes. It has a maximum rotational speed of 4,200 rpm (revolutions per minute), data transfer rate of 38.1M bytes per second and average seek time of 12 milliseconds, Fujitsu said.

Sample shipping began worldwide this month, the statement said.

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