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Sony Corporation to Develop LT05 Tape Media with a Three Terabyte Capacity

Sony Corporation‘s Storage Media Division has signed the LTO5 licensing contract with the Technology Provider Companies (TPC), an industry consortium consisting of Hewlett Packard, IBM and Quantum. This agreement now allows Sony to start development of its LTO5 Ultrium media.

"The LTO5 tape technology is aimed at supporting the ever-increasing storage capacity requirements of today’s data rich storage environments," said Richard Leonarz, business manager, Sony Storage Media Division.

Each cartridge will be able to store up to 1.5TB native (3.0TB 2:1 compressed) of data on one cartridge. This new generation of the LTO Ultrium format also delivers an impressive data transfer rate of up to 140MB/s native (280MB/s 2:1 compressed).

Specific features of this latest generation of Sony`s LTO Ultrium tape cartridge media include:

1. Increased storage capacity achieved by increasing the number of recording tracks and allowing for higher recording density.
2. Newly developed fine magnetic particles necessary for a tape that is thinner and longer than previous generations. .
3. Development of stronger binder required to protect the tape surface from potential damage caused by the tape traveling past the recording head.
4. Sony’s newly developed thin-layer coating technology and smooth surface coating process necessary to meet with the higher recording density needs.

While these technology developments are necessary to bring LTO5 tape technology to the market, Sony’s continual pursuit of meeting customer requirements has also led to modifications on the LTO cartridge itself. In order to meet the increased demands for RFID cartridge labeling, which are thicker in size than current barcode technologies, Sony’s LTO5 cartridges are being designed with a deeper label cavity allowing these labels to fit better and reduce risk of falling off.

The new LTO5 cartridges will be consistent with Sony’s ongoing efforts to develop an environmentally responsible manufacturing process. The new cartridges are made of 34% recycled resin materials and Sony is promoting the use of Library Packs, which exclude both the plastic P-cases as well as shrink-wrap material, thus reducing the overall use of plastics.

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