FUJIFILM launches ultra-fast, 45TB LTO Ultrium9 Data Cartridge
Magnetic tape storage media with maximum storage capacity of 45TB, 1.5 times greater than the previous model, providing safe long-term storage of high-volume data at low cost and significantly mitigating CO2 emissions due to reduced power consumption during data storage*1

SYDNEY, 7 September 2021 – FUJIFILM has launched its new, ultra-fast 45TB FUJIFILM LTO Ultrium9 Data Cartridge (LTO-9). The new LTO-9 data cartridge complies with the ninth generation LTO Ultrium*2 standards for magnetic tape storage media, suitable for backing up and archiving large-capacity data. LTO-9 uses FUJIFILM’s proprietary technology to offer up to 45TB in storage capacity (18TB for non-compressed data) which is 1.5 times larger than LTO-8*3.

Magnetic tapes are attracting an increasing attention as storage media that provides long-term storage of large-capacity data safely at low cost. In addition, it has a significantly lower environmental impact as there is no need to have it constantly powered on during data storage, thereby mitigating the amount of CO2 emissions generated during data storage by 95%*4 compared to hard disk drives (HDDs)

The high capacity, achieved in the new LTO-9, caters to the surging data storage demand amidst the rapid development of IoT technology and acceleration of Digital Transformation, and contributes to mitigating CO2 emissions, an urgent task that must be addressed globally.

The amount of data generated worldwide has exponentially increased in recent years with the introduction of 5G networks and high-definition 4K / 8K video, development of IoT, information and communication technology, and the use of Artificial Intelligence for Big Data analysis. This includes “cold-data,” or data that was generated a long time ago and rarely accessed, which is estimated to account for more than 80% of all data.

The utilisation of accumulated data, including cold data, is rapidly increasing for developing next-generation technologies, and so is the need for reliable and cost-effective long-term storage of such data for future use. Yet, consuming a large amount of electricity for using and storing high-volume data amounts will lead to increased CO2 emissions.

Major data centres and private enterprises are actively adopting renewable energy to satisfy their electricity demand, or building a data infrastructure with minimal power use, in their efforts to address climate change, which is one of the major social issues.

The new LTO-9 features barium ferrite magnetic particles (BaFe magnetic particles), formulated into fine particles with Fujifilm’s proprietary “NANOCUBIC technology*5”, evenly distributed to coat tape surfaces, forming a smooth and thin magnetic layer with minimum unevenness. This has resulted in the maximum storage capacity of 45TB (18TB for non-compressed data), some 1.5 times the capacity of LTO-8.

The new tape also delivers high-speed data transfer reaching 1,000MB/sec*6. (400MB/sec. for non-compressed data) for advanced convenience. Furthermore, there is no need to have it constantly powered on during data storage, thereby reducing the amount of electricity consumption in the process compared to HDDs.

Magnetic tapes can also be stored offline, creating “air gap” as a form of protection to minimise the risk of data damage / loss in cyberattacks. The fact that the storage media provides long-term storage of high-capacity data safely, has made magnetic tape a preferred choice of major data centres and research institutes for many years.

As a manufacturer of computer-use magnetic tapes with the top global market share*7, FUJIFILM will continue to develop and supply high-performance and high-quality media and services that satisfy customer needs and expectations, thereby addressing social issues.

Main features of the LTO-9 data cartridge
(1) Incorporates unique BaFe magnetic particles to achieve the maximum storage capacity of 45TB
The new LTO-9 features BaFe magnetic particles, formulated into fine particles with Fujifilm’s proprietary NANOCUBIC technology*5, evenly dispersed to coat tape surfaces, forming a smooth and thin magnetic layer with minimum unevenness. The data recording density has also been improved to record 8,960 data tracks in 12.65mm-wide tape to achieve the storage capacity of up to 45TB (18TB for non-compressed data), 1.5 times the capacity of the LTO-8.

(2) Advanced level of convenience and reliability
LTO-9 allows for high-speed data transfer at up to 1,000MB/sec. (400MB/sec. for non-compressed data) for exceptional convenience
It provides high-quality read back signals and low error rate. In addition, material design has been optimised for highly-accurate tracking performance and excellent operational durability for the magnetic heads in the tape drives, boosting reliability and stability in reading and writing data.

(3) Safe, long-term storage capability at low cost for energy-saving data storage
The LTO-9 has superior TCO*8 to HDD, capable of holding a large amount of cold data at low cost.
It creates “air gap” data protection, physically isolated from the network, thereby minimising the risk of data damage or loss caused by system failures, infection with computer viruses and cyberattacks to ensure the safety of valuable data.
An accelerated life test*9 has indicated that magnetic tape using BaFe magnetic particles maintains stable magnetic characteristics for over 50 years.
The LTO-9 can store data with lower power consumption than HDD does, contributing to the designing of storage system with a significantly lower environmental impact.

Main specifications of the new LTO-9 data cartridge

Maximum capacity (uncompressed)
45TB (18TB)
Maximum transfer rate (uncompressed)
1,000MB/sec*10. (400MB/sec.) 
Number of tracks
8,960 (32 track heads in the serpentine format)
Cartridge memory
Internal EEPROM with 32kB electromagnetic induction antenna
Tape width
12.65 mm
Tape thickness
5.2 μm
Tape length
1,035 m

Model numbers and packaging formats

Model number
Packaging format
LTO FB UL-9 18.0T*7
5 cartridges x 4
LTO FB UL-9 WORM 18.0T*11
5 cartridges x 4
LTO FB UL-9 18.0T ECO*12
20 cartridges x 1
LTO FB UL-9 18.0T LP20*12
20 cartridges x 1

*1 Source: Brad Johns Consulting, LLC “Improving Information Technology Sustainability with Modern Tape Storage”
*2 Linear Tape-Open, LTO, the LTO logo, Ultrium and the Ultrium logo are the registered trademarks of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, IBM and Quantum in the United States and other countries.
*3 FUJIFILM LTO Ultrium8 Data Cartridge that complies with the eighth generation LTO Ultrium standards
*4 When saving 100PB (petabytes) of data for ten years, storing it on magnetic tape generates 95% less CO2 emissions (approx. 2,400 tons) during the storage than doing so on HDD. (Source: Brad Johns Consulting, LLC “Improving Information Technology Sustainability with Modern Tape Storage”)
*5 Fujifilm’s nanotechnology-based magnetic tape technology with thin coating to achieve high-density magnetic data recording. It consists of the “nano-particle technology” for formulating magnetic particles into nano-sized particles, “nano-dispersion technology” for evenly dispersing and arranging nano-sized magnetic particles, and “nano-coating technology” for achieving the coating of the ultra-thin layer.
*6 Depends on the drive interface.
*7 Manufacturer share, according to FUJIFILM and “Re-writable type” that allows data to be re-written
**8 Total Cost of Ownership, which encompasses all costs associated with the introduction of a storage drive, server, etc., including initial cost, cost of maintenance and cost of electricity consumed.
*9 According to the Tape Storage Technical Committee of JEITA (Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association)
*10 Depends on the drive interface.
*11 “Write Once, Read Many (WORM) type” that allows data to be written just once so as to prevent data tampering or accidental deletion
*12 The “ECO pack” / “Library pack” of Re-Writable cartridges in minimum-required packaging that does without the use of individual plastic cases.

Picture credit
FUJIFILM’s new LTO-9 data cartridge (front)
FUJIFILM’s new LTO-9 data cartridge (rear)