The most dense solid-state memory ever created could soon exceed the capabilities of current computer storage devices by 1,000 times using a new technique. The same technology was used to manufacture atomic-scale circuits, allowing for quickly removing or replacing single hydrogen atoms. The technology enables the memory to be rewritable, meaning it could lead to far more efficient types of solid-state drives for computers.

Previous discoveries of atomic-scale computer storage were stable only at extremely low temperatures, but the new memory works at real-world temperatures and can withstand normal use. The memory is stable well above room temperature and is precise down to the atom.

The technology has immediate applications for archiving data; next steps will include increasing read and write speeds for even more flexible applications. To demonstrate the new memory, the entire alphabet was encoded at a density of 138 terabytes per square inch — roughly equivalent to writing 350,000 letters across a grain of rice.

Watch a video demo of the technique on Tech Briefs TV here. For more information, contact Michel Proulx at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; 780-248-2024.


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This article first appeared in the September, 2018 issue of Tech Briefs Magazine.

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