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HGST releases helium-filled 6TB HDD for data centres

HGST is shipping a new 6TB Ultrastar HelioSeal helium-filled hard drive that it hopes will give customers higher capacities whilst at the same time sacrificing the amount of power used by large size data centres.

The Western Digital company’s new drive is the industry’s first hermetically sealed helium-filled hard disk drive and promises the lowest customer total cost of ownership [TCO] across a variety of different situations.

“Not only is our new Ultrastar helium hard drive helping customers solve data centre challenges today, our mainstream helium platform will serve as the future building block for new products and technologies moving forward. This is a huge feat, and we are gratified by the support of our customers in the development of this platform,” said Brendan Collins, VP of product marketing, HGST.

HGST’s 6TB Ultrastar drive weighs just 640g, consumes 5.3 watts when idle and runs at four to five degrees cooler when compared to the air-filled 4TB equivalent drive. HGST worked with the likes of HP, Netflix and social media companies to work out the best way to manufacture the drive.

The 6TB drive offers the best value TCO for cloud storage, massive scale-out environments, disk-to-disk backup, and replicated or RAID environments, and this is due to a combination of its capacity, power, cooling and storage density.

The low level of TCO comes as a result of the helium used inside the drive and the element has one seventh of the density that air has and as such reduces power consumption, temperature and turbulence within the drive.

The helium[powered platform will allow HGST to expand into future sectors such as cold storage, which HGST is planning “to address over the next couple of years”. Pricing is yet to be revealed by HGST with the company hosting a live demo of the drive at the Cloud Expo from 4-7 November in Santa Clara, California.