Seagate has started shipping its first helium-filled hard drives.
Aimed specifically at high-capacity data centres, these gas-filled drives will mean increased capacity and lower power consumption while still using current magnetic recording technologies.
“The density of helium is one-seventh that of air, which reduces drag force acting on the spinning disk stack and lowers fluid flow forces affecting the disks and the heads.”
“By filling hard drives with helium, makers of HDDs can install up to seven platters into one industry-standard 3.5/1-inch hard drive, reduce power consumption of HDD motors and improve accuracy of arm’s positioning”.
As the HDD is hermetically sealed, it will feature significantly different internal architecture than those drives currently available on the market.
It is not known whether these drives will be readily commercially available.