Superman memory crystal

Superman memory crystal [1] is a nanostructured glass for recording of 5-D digital data [2] using femtosecond laser writing process. [3] The memory crystal is capable of storing up to 360 terabytes worth of data [4] [5] for billions of years. [6] [7] [8] [9] The concept was experimentally demonstrated in 2013. [10] [11] [12]


Technical design

The concept is the bulk storing of data optically in non-photosensitive transparent materials such as fused quartz , which is renowned for its high chemical stability and resistance. Writing in it using a femtosecond-laser was first proposed and demonstrated in 1996. [1] [13] [14] The storage media consists of fused quartz where the spatial dimensions , intensity, polarization , and wavelength are used to modulate data. By introducing gold or silver nanoparticlesembedded in the material, their plasmonic properties can be exploited. [1]

Up to 18 layers have been tested with a pulse rate of 0.2 μJ, a duration of 600 fs and a repetition rate of 500 kHz. 20 ± 1 years at room temperature (30 ⁰C). Measuring the durability using accelerated aging measurements shows the time of the nanogratings is 3 × 10 At an elevated temperature of 189 ⁰C the extrapolated decay time is comparable to the age of the Universe ( 13.8 × 10  years ). By recording data with a numerical aperture objective of 1.4 NA and a wavelength of 250-350 nm, a capacity of 360 TBytes can be achieved. [1]

See also

  • Orders of magnitude (data)
  • Orders of magnitude (time)
  • 3D optical data storage

Further reading

  • Eternal 5D data storage by ultrafast laser writing in glass (accessed 2016-04-27, dated 2016-03-04)
  • Official 5D Memory Crystal website


  1. ^ Jump up to:d Kazansky, P .; et al. (11 March 2016). “Eternal 5D data storage via ultrafast-laser writing in glass” . SPIE Newsroom.
  2. Jump up^ & The five dimensional consist of the size, orientation and the three-dimensional position of the nanostructures.
  3. Jump up^ ” ” Cristória de memória do Superman “armazenam até 360TB por 1 milhão de anos” . Terra. November 11, 2013 . Retrieved March 1, 2016 .
  4. Jump up^ Eternal 5D data storage could record the history of humankindpublished byUniversity of Southampton(2016)
  5. Jump up^ Superman memory crystal lets you store 360TB worth of databy Kevin Huebler, inCNBC(2016)
  6. Jump up^ 5D nanostructured quartz glass optical memory could provide ‘unlimited’ data storage for a million yearsby Jingyu Zhang et al (2013)
  7. Jump up^ “Superman memory crystal” could store hundreds of terabytes indefinitelyby Dario Borghino (2013)
  8. Jump up^ New ‘Superman’ Crystals can be seen for billions of yearsby Jethro Mullen atCNN-Tech(2016)
  9. Jump up^ Kazansky, Peter. “Nanostructures in glass will store data for billions of years” . SPIE Newsroom . Retrieved 11 March 2016 .
  10. Jump up^ 5D ‘Superman Memory’ crystal Could Lead to Lifetime unlimited data storagepublished on 9th July 2013 by university of southampton
  11. Jump up^ 5D Data Storage by Ultrafast Laser Nanostructuring in Glassby Jingyu Zhang, Mindaugas Gecevičius, Martynas Beresna and Peter G. Kazansky, published by “Optoelectronics Research Center” SO17 1BJ, Reino Unido (2013)
  12. Jump up^ New nanostructured glass for imaging and recording developedby, provided byUniversity of Southampton(2011)
  13. Jump up^ IN Glezer, M. Milosavljevic, L. Huang, RJ Finlay T.-H. Her, JP Callan, E. Mazur, Three-dimensional optical storage inside transparent materials, Opt. Lett. 21, p. 2023-2025, 1996.
  14. Jump up^ M. Watanabe, S. Juodkazis, HB Sun, S. Matsuo, H. Misawa, M. Miwa, R. Kaneko, Transmission and Photoluminescence images of three-dimensional memory in vitreous silica,Applied Physics Letters74, p. 3957-3559, 1999.