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IBM Racetrack Memory Announced

International Business Machines Corp., the world’s largest company-owned laboratory, has announced new technology that stems from an area of physics called spintronics. The new breakthrough is called Racetrack which can delivery faster, cheaper and higher capacity data storage.

RaceTrack, unlike conventional memory which relies on electronic charges to store data, uses the spin of an electron.

The new technology breakthrough may help increase the amount of storage in devices such as iPods by 100-fold and pave the way for entirely new products.

A media player could use Racetrack to hold as many as 500,000 songs or about 3,500 movies. However, Researchers IBM point out that the new memory is still 7 to 8 years away.

“We have demonstrated the physics and materials underlying racetrack memory,” said Dr Stuart Parkin, an IBM fellow at the Almaden laboratory.

The researchers say that it will take another four years to build the prototype and then three to four more years to refine the prototype for commercial use.

The memory is called race track because of the method use to store data in boundaries between magnetic regions in nanowires.