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New Particle Could Make Hard Drives 20 times Smaller

By Anthony Thurston on August 8th 2013

Working as a photographer or filmmaker in this day and age means you need lots of hardrives. Lots of images and video takes up lots and lots of space, especially with the latest generation of cameras coming with larger and larger megapixel counts. The size of our image files is getting larger and larger, meaning we need more and more space to accommodate.


What if I told you that we could make hard drives 20 times smaller, while holding even higher amounts of data. That would be great wouldn’t it. Less space per hard drive means more room for hard drives, meaning more room for more storage space. There are reasons why our current drives are stuck at a certain size, you can only squeeze so many particles together before the magnetic field messes up the data. That is all about to change.

A group of scientists has created a long theorized particle called Skyrmion. In layman’s terms skyrmion is like a magnetic field that resembles a twisted vortex of atoms.  In a normal particle all the charges of the atoms line up, but with Skyrmion they are arranged in this twister like formation  that is stable but also prevents them from being too close to each other.

The end result is a particle that allows us to make hard drives 20 times smaller. The problem is that they have not nailed down the science of it all yet, so it is still a bit off. But you have to admit, the potential of this is great for everyone in the Photography and film-making fields.

What are your thoughts? Let us know in a comment below.

[via Gizmodo]

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Anthony Thurston is a photographer based in the Salem, Oregon area specializing in Boudoir. He recently started a new project, Fiercely Boudoir to help support the growing boudoir community. Find him over on Instagram. You may also connect with him via Email.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. David Burckhard

    The article states that the drives with the same capacity could be 20 TIMES smaller, not 20% smaller. Conversely, using the new technique, twenty times more data could be stored than using conventional techniques.

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  2. Aaron

    This summary is way off. 20% smaller drives is hardly a big improvement. Say a 1TB portable drive takes up 10 cubic inches. According to your summary, this advancement would result in a 1TB drive that takes up 8 cubic inches. What the article is really saying is that the advancement would allow for 20 TIMES MORE storage. Meaning you’d have a portable drive that takes up the same 10 cubic inches, but now stores 20TB of data.

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    • Anthony T.

      Ok, the problem lies in that the title of the source article (Gizmodo) says 20 times smaller, and but in the content they say 20%. This is what threw me off. I will be updating the post to reflect the correct information.

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