Storage start-up fits 250 hours of HD content on one disc

Israeli company Mempile uses fluorescence to store up to 1 terabyte of data on an optical disc.

An Israeli start-up has created a way to store a whole lot of data on optical discs using fluorescence.

The TeraDisc looks like a regular CD, except it's chartreuse and see-through. Mempile says its disc will start off able to store 600GB to 700GB and in a year will be able to write 1TB worth of data. There are two physical layers of plastic, but 200 virtual layers on the one-sided disc. That means 250 hours of high-definition content or 300,000 digital photos. HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc can currently hold about 50GB of data on dual-layer discs.


The TeraDisc gets its green/yellow hue from the molecules used to store the data. A red laser writes the disc by focusing on a particular point, causing a chemical reaction so that the fluorescent molecules change state. The laser reads the disc by looking for the presence or absence of fluorescence.

The TeraDisc will need its own drive, which won't be all that different than optical drives currently on the market, according to Beth Erez, Mempile's chief marketing officer. TeraDisc will have little to no effect on the so-called format war between Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD because their market is in pre-recorded formats, and is actually "a battle over revenues and intellectual property," Erez said. She sees TeraDisc as a way for consumers to archive their purchased content.

Mempile will eventually license the technology and so far is in talks with several Asian manufacturers, according to Erez.

About the author

Erica Ogg is a CNET News reporter who covers Apple, HP, Dell, and other PC makers, as well as the consumer electronics industry. She's also one of the hosts of CNET News' Daily Podcast. In her non-work life, she's a history geek, a loyal Dodgers fan, and a mac-and-cheese connoisseur.


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