Browse Prior Art Database

Distillation Optical Storage

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000045542D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Apr-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-07
Document File: 2 page(s) / 50K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Marks, RF: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

An erasable optical storage medium is described consisting of an array of small closed chambers each of which is partly (e.g., half) filled with a low vapor pressure, opaque or reflective writing solid. Writing is done by heating one part (e.g. , half) of a closed chamber with a laser beam, thereby distilling the writing material away from that part and rendering that part either transparent or non-reflective. Erasing is done by heating the other part of the chamber with a laser, thereby distilling the writing material back.

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Distillation Optical Storage

An erasable optical storage medium is described consisting of an array of small closed chambers each of which is partly (e.g., half) filled with a low vapor pressure, opaque or reflective writing solid. Writing is done by heating one part (e.g. , half) of a closed chamber with a laser beam, thereby distilling the writing material away from that part and rendering that part either transparent or non- reflective. Erasing is done by heating the other part of the chamber with a laser, thereby distilling the writing material back.

The storage medium may have many configurations, such as a rotating disk with one or more optical heads to address the disk, or a plate with a steered laser beam to address the plate. The storage medium consists of small hollow volumes 10 (Fig. 1) embedded in a support medium 11 consisting of a base plate 12 and a top plate 13. Each hollow volume 10 is a storage location and contains a writing material 14 which is either opaque or reflective. Fig. 2.1 illustrates a hollow volume 10 after manufacture and before any write operation.

Writing is accomplished by heating one side 16 of the hollow volume 10 with a laser 18 and distilling the solid writing material 14 to the other side 20 (Fig.
2.2). Reading can be done with the same laser 18 at lower power or with a separate light source. If the writing material is opaque, the presence of material 14 attenuates the light reaching detector 22 in one state (Fig. 2.1) but...