ToughDisk® 3500 SATA Rugged Hard Disk
Formation, Inc.
Moorestown, NJ

Formation’s ToughDisk® 3500 SATA Rugged Hard Disk has been selected by Conduant Corp. to be used in data recorders for a NASA technology demonstration project. Conduant is integrating 25 terabytes of TD3500 SATA storage into its Big River LTX2 high-speed data recorders, which will collect data on NASA’s WB-57 aircraft, a mid-wing, long-range airplane capable of operating for extended periods of time at altitudes ranging from sea level to over 60,000 feet.

The disks have an operating altitude of -15,000 feet to 85,000 feet, and an operating temperature range of -40° to 70°C. The vibration- and shock-hardened standard form factor 3.5" disks have a maximum internal transfer rate of 88 MB/s and a high-speed USB 2.0 auxiliary port that enables full 320GB access to systems lacking SATA connectivity. They also have low-power 5VDC operation with options for additional 12 VDC and 28 VDC inputs.

ImageFive LTX2 recorders will each house 16 disks on the WB-57 aircraft. As a drop-in replacement for standard, non-rugged 3.5" disks, the SATA disks’ size and low wattage will save development cost and time. The reliability of the LTX2 recorders, coupled with the rugged disks, creates a high-speed recording system for harsh conditions in the avionics environment.

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NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the April, 2008 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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