The demand for digital storage capacity exceeds a growth of 60% per annum. Facilities like storage area networks, data warehouses, supercomputers and e-commerce related data mining requires much greater capacity to process the volume of data.
Further, with the advent of high bandwidth Internet and data-intensive applications such as high-definition TV (HDTV) and video & music on-demand, even smaller devices such as personal VCRs, PDAs, mobile phones etc will require multi-gigabyte and terabyte capacity in the next couple of years.
This ever increasing capacity demand can only be managed by the steady increase in the areal density of the magnetic and optical recording media. In future,this density increase is possible by taking advantage of the shorter wavelength lasers, higher lens numerical aperture (NA) or by employing near-field techniques. Today, the optical data storage capacities have been increased by creating double-sided media. This approach for increasing the effective storage capacity is quite unique for optical memory technologies. Fluorescent multilayer disc (FMD) is a three-dimensional storage for large amount of data. This three-dimensional optical storage opens up another dimension of increasing the capacity of a given volume of media, with the objective of achieving a cubic storage element, having the dimensions of writing / reading laser wavelength. The current wavelength of 650 Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Âµm should be sufficient enough to store up to a Terabyte of data.