A team of scientists has demonstrated a heat-only laser based recording system which could massively boost hard drive speed.

Boffins aim to do away with magnetic fields in next-gen hard drives

An international group of scientists have demonstrated a novel way to record magnetic information using only heat which they say will be vastly faster than the current schemes used by hard drives.

The results featured in the February edition of the scientific journal Nature Communications, describing how the team managed to use a "sub-picosecond laser pulse without the presence of a magnetic field" to set the magnetic orientation of the target material.

The technique could pave the way for hard drives capable of access speeds of terabytes a second and without the use of magnetic fields will also be more efficient. Presumably before the thorny issue of needing to rotate a disk a heck of a lot faster.

There’s no guarantee the experimental findings will result in a commercially viable technology but it seems likely the players in the cut-throat hard drive industry will be scouring the paper just the same.

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