Sometime this summer, California-based Nimbus Data plans to launch what it contends is the largest-capacity solid-state drive: a 100-terabyte SSD called the ExaDrive DC100. Also available in a 50-terabyte model, the drive is designed for memory and storage for data center and edge applications, according to the company.

Solid-state drive technology has been advancing at Moore's Law-like speeds in recent years, with memory capacities rising dramatically as prices keep dropping. Nimbus Data said the ExaDrive DC100 provides enough flash memory to store as many as 20,000 HD movies or 20 million songs. A rack of such drives could provide a data center with more than 100 petabytes of storage, the company said.

The new drive from Nimbus Data also delivers high efficiency, drawing up to 85 percent less power per terabyte than competing devices, according to Nimbus Data. That efficiency can help organizations reduce their SSD cost of ownership as much as 42 percent, the company said.

Efficiency, Density Are 'Critical Drivers'

Nimbus Data said it developed the ExaDrive DC100 specifically for capacity and efficiency rather than speed. Built with 3D NAND and a new type of multiprocessor architecture, the drive is also small enough to fit into a pocket, the company said.

"As flash memory prices decline, capacity, energy efficiency, and density will become the critical drivers of cost reduction and competitive advantage," Nimbus Data CEO and founder Thomas Isakovich said in a statement yesterday. "The ExaDrive DC100 meets these challenges for both data center and edge applications, offering unmatched capacity in an ultra-low power design."

While the new drive can support up to 100,000 read/write operations per day and up to 500 MB per second of throughput, the device will be available to customers with an unlimited endurance guarantee of five years, according Nimbus Data. Such a guarantee is aimed at reducing hardware refresh cycles and eliminating the need for costly support renewals.

'Well-Suited' for Edge, IoT

Because the new drive features the same 3.5-inch form factor and SATA interface used by hard drives, the ExaDrive DC100 provides plug-and-play capabilities for hundreds of different storage and server platforms, Nimbus Data said. The drive's small size and low power needs of 0.1 watts per terabyte also make it "well-suited for edge and IoT [Internet of Things] applications," the company said.

The ExaDrive DC100's design "opens up the opportunity to turbo-charge big-data platforms while at the same time improving reliability, significantly reducing device count, increasing data mobility, and lowering the TCO of multi-PB-scale storage platforms," according to Eric Burgener, research vice president of storage at the analyst firm IDC. Such drives also make flash memory more cost effective for "a broader set of use cases outside of tier 0 and tier 1 applications," he added.

Set to become generally available this summer, the 50-TB and 100-TB ExaDrive DC devices are currently being sampled by Nimbus Data's "strategic customers." The company hasn't yet provided any details on pricing.