Western Digital 20 Terabyte Hard Drives Will Power Zettabyte Age

Western Digital (NASDAQ: WDC) announced its nine-disk mechanical platform, which includes energy-assisted recording technology and maintains the company’s areal density leadership while delivering the highest capacity available. The company will sample the 18TB Ultrastar DC HC550 CMR HDD and the 20TB Ultrastar DC HC650 SMR HDD to select customers by the end of 2019 with production ramp expected in the first half of 2020.

This rapid ramp and availability of the 20TB SMR drive following a technology preview in June 2019, supports a growing ecosystem and the continued industry adoption of SMR. Western Digital estimates that 50 percent of its HDD exabytes shipped will be on SMR by 2023.

Western Digital will offer a unique and full portfolio of Capacity Enterprise HDDs, with cost-optimized configurations for every important capacity point: six-disk 10TB Ultrastar DC HC330 air-based HDD; eight-disk 14TB Ultrastar DC HC530 helium-based HDD; nine-disk 18TB Ultrastar DC HC550 helium-based HDD; and a nine-disk 20TB Ultrastar DC HC650 helium-based HDD. The company’s strong execution has resulted in a rapid ramp and majority share at its capacity point for the Ultrastar DC HC530 HDD3, the industry’s only available eight-disk 14TB CMR drive. According to TRENDFOCUS, 14TB will continue to be the industry’s dominant capacity point through the first half of 2020.

How Helium Technology Boosts Capacity

Sealed, helium-filled drives represent one of the most significant storage technology advancements in decades. In 2013, Western Digital
introduced HelioSeal® technology, a foundational building block for high-capacity hard disk drives (HDDs). This technology innovation hermetically seals the HDD with helium, which is one-seventh the density of air. The less-dense atmosphere enables thinner disks and more of them for higher capacities in the same industry-standard form factor. Less air friction means less power required to spin the disks and less air turbulence for higher reliability. Helium drives expand the boundaries of conventional high-capacity HDDs, allowing for dramatic increases in efficiency, reliability, and value. HelioSeal technology delivers today’s lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) for hyperscale and data-centric applications.

According to industry analysts, petabytes stored in the Capacity Enterprise Hard Drive Segment are increasing at a compound annual growth rate of 40%. This means overall memory capacity is doubling every two years.

Existing 14TB helium SMR drives consume just 5.2 watts during idle operation, a 60% reduction in watts-per-TB compared to 8TB Ultrastar air-based HDDs.

Lower cooling requirements with drives that typically run 4˚ to 5˚C cooler to lower power and cooling costs.

Cooler operation also results in better reliability and enables systems with higher storage densities.

Quieter operation and up to 50% lower weight-per TB improve environmental conditions in high-density deployments and enable more storage capacity where building codes enforce floor loading limits.

Shingled Magnetic Recording Boost Capacity

Shingled magnetic recording (SMR) technology complements Helium technology by providing an additional 16% increase in areal density
compared to same-generation drives using conventional magnetic recording (CMR) technology. Physically, this is done by writing the data
sequentially, then overlapping (or “shingling”) it with another track of data.

SOURCES- Western Digital
Written By Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com