IBM Racetrack Memory

Super Memory Breakthrough: Store Every Movie Made This Year on Your Phone (With Room to Spare)

Racetrack memory works by storing data as magnetic regions (also called domains), which would be transported along nanowire "racetracks." Instead of forcing a computer to seek out the data it needs, as traditional computing systems do, the information would automatically slide along the racetrack to where it could be used. The result: powerful and efficient computing.

The concept of storing bits of data in the region between two magnetic domains (the domain wall) has been around for nearly a half century. However, manipulating domain walls was an expensive and power-needy endeavor. The new finding published in the current issue of the journal Science shows how engineers at IBM's Racetrack Memory Project were able to precisely and efficiently control the placement of these magnetic domains within a racetrack system. By controlling electrical pulses along the track, researchers were able to move these domains at hundreds of miles per hour and then stop them precisely at the position needed, allowing massive amounts of stored data to be accessed in a billionth of a second.

IBM’s Racetrack Storage Under Starter’s Order

IBM has been working on a new storage technology that could allow a mobile device to store the annual output of the worldwide movie industry with room to spare, running on a single battery for weeks at time. IBM’s Almeda Lab reckons that these devices could appear on the market in two to five years time.

The system is known as Racetrack memory because the data moves along a nanowire like cars parading at high speed along a road. The best way to visualise the process is to imagine a magnetic tape recorder where the tape is motionless and the data moves along it to cross the record/playback head.

Racetrack memory - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Racetrack memory is an experimental non-volatile memory device under development at IBM's Almaden Research Center by a team led by Stuart Parkin.[1] In early 2008, a 3-bit version was successfully demonstrated.[2] If it is developed successfully, racetrack would offer storage density higher than comparable solid-state memory devices like flash memory and similar to conventional disk drives, and also have much higher read/write performance. It is one of a number of new technologies trying to become a universal memory in the future.


IBM Research

Spintronics Devices Research

Racetrack Memory, Spin Injectors, Magnetic Tunnel Transistors, and a host of more exotic spintronic designs take us beyond the realm of the simple GMR spinvalve.

Collected from: Racetrack