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Computer Terminology
Computer Memory
Hard Disk Drives

What is holographic memory?


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August 05, 2009 1:14AM

Using holograms as memory storage was first proposed by Pieter Heerden in the 1960s. During the early 1970s, a group of scientists from TRCA laboratories succeeded in storing 500 holograms using an iron doped litium niobate crystal. Moreover, they were also able to store five hundred fifty high-resolution hologram images using a material made up of light sensitive polymer. The high cost of the materials needed for this type of technology as well as the rise of magnetic and optical drives shelved the project in the end. Now research for holographic memory systems has been reactivated since the components needed for such a technology has become widely available and cheaper. The laser system needed for the device to work, for instance, has shrunk in size so it can easily fit in a conventional CD or DVD player. Moreover, liquid crytal displays or LCDs which were in their infancy during the initial research done on holographic memory systems are now more advanced and quite a lot cheaper. The same goes for the other components such as the "Charge-Coupled Device" or CCD.