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High Capacity Data Storage System Disclosure Number: IPCOM000076217D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Feb-24
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-24
Document File: 3 page(s) / 89K

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A high capacity data storage system is provided including a double-sided storage medium to be scanned by arrays of probes

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High Capacity Data Storage System

Scanning probe based data storage systems generally consist of an array of scanning probes and a scanning system which carries the storage media and moves it relative to the array of probe heads, see figure 1. The storage capacity of such a system is a function of the storage areal density and the available storage media area (i.e. the size of the array which must be matched to the size of the scan table that carries the storage media ). The most straight forward method to increase the storage capacity of such a system is to increase the size of the probe array and the size of the scan table/storage media area. Unfortunately there are two drawbacks to this approach. First, in mobile applications, the maximum size of the array and scanning system is constrained by the size of standard form factors (packages) such as, for example, the secure digital standard which has a size of 24mm x 32 mm x 2.1mm. Such size constraints put a limit on the maximum size (area and thickness) of the array and scanner assembly. The second problem arises due to the mechanical tolerances required in such a system. In order to reliably operate such a system, the spacing between the array and scan table must be very well controlled (sub micron tolerances), requiring both surfaces to be flat on the nanometer scale (and clean). Further, the two surfaces must remain flat over the full operating temperature range of the device. Note that this is particularly challenging for the array chip with integrated electronics which tends to bow as a function of temperature due to thermal expansion induced stress. Such thermally induced bowing can also result in significant stress being transmitted to the scan system and result in large out of plane motion of the scan table. As the size of the array and scan table is increased, maintaining the flatness of these two surfaces becomes more challenging.


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FIG 1: Probe storage array and scanner assembly

A much simpler way to increase the capacity of such a storage system is to deposit storage media on both the upper and lower surfaces of the scan table and to mount array chips above and below the table, effectively making a double sided probe storage array, see figure 2. This approach results in a doubling of the storage capacity of the system, using a constant area for the device...