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Showa Denko Develops HD Media for MAS-MAMR Technology

Showa Denko K.K. has developed hard disk (HD) media for hard disk drives (HDDs) which support data recording with Microwave Assisted Switching-Microwave Assisted Magnetic Recording (MAS-MAMR) technology, which is a next-generation data-recording technology based on a new data recording principle suggested by Toshiba Corporate Research & Development Center and Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation (Hereinafter collectively called Toshiba).

MAS-MAMR is a next generation data recording method that can realize further increase in data-storage capacity of HDDs. At present, Microwave Assisted Magnetic Recording (MAMR) is a leading edge data-recording technology, which has already been put into practical use. The newly developed MAS-MAMR technology realizes data-recording track on the surface of HD media drastically narrower than that of MAMR-technology-based HD media through utilization of the strong magnetic oscillation effect of Microwave Assisted Switching (MAS effect)*1, thereby increasing data-storage capacity of HDDs.

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Aiming to put this new data-recording technology into practical use, SDK has been developing HD media supporting MAS-MAMR in collaboration with Toshiba and TDK Corporation (TDK) which is a manufacturer of read/write heads for HDDs. In this joint development program, SDK, Toshiba, and TDK have cooperatively proved for the first time in the world that HDD as a combination of read/write head equipped with dual spin-injection-layer, which has been developed by TDK, and HD media equipped with new-type magnetic layer, which has been developed by SDK, can substantially increase HDD’s data-storage capacity through manifestations of the MAS effect.

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In this year, SDK has already started supplying Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation with HD media supporting MAMR. These media are mainly installed in 18TB HDDs for near-line use in data centers. On the basis of the fruit of the technology development program mentioned above, and aiming to realize large-capacity near-line HDDs with storage capacity of more than 30TB, SDK will accelerate development of HD media supporting MAS-MAMR which Toshiba aims to put to practical use as the second generation MAMR.

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The amount of data generated and communicated has been increasing rapidly due to progress in Digital Transformation (DX) including the spread of teleworking, 5th generation (5G) mobile communication services, and Internet of Things (IoT). As a result, it has become a more important task for HDD manufacturers to develop large-capacity near-line HDDs for use in data centers, which record and store a large amount of data. In order to respond to the demand for the increase in storage capacities of HDDs, SDK will accelerate two-way development of HD media supporting MAS-MAMR and HAMR (heat assisted magnetic recording) in accordance with its motto of “Best in Class,” thereby developing the best HD media in the world.

MAS effect: MAS effect is an abbreviation of Microwave Assisted Switching effect. MAS effect is an effect of strong magnetic oscillation between Spin Torque Oscillator (STO) and magnetic recording media. This strong magnetic oscillation enables HDD manufacturer to record digital data on the surface of HD media with recording track narrower than those of HDDs equipped with conventional magnetic recording technologies.

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