Why Does Areal Density Matter in the Data Center?

The future of sustainable, mass-capacity storage is now.

Data is growing faster than the world’s ability to store it.

Between 2024 and 2025, 30ZB of data will be generated.

Only 2ZB of storage capacity will be manufactured.

Yikes. This 15x gap1 indicates a huge need for more storage. As data continues to explode in the wake of AI productization, enterprise data centers will need to find sustainable ways to scale against limited space, power, and budget.

Adding more disks to a hard drive may help scale capacity

But it isn’t the most efficient approach.

  • Each disk in a hard drive requires many materials. The more disks added, the more it costs to build (and buy), and the more it takes from the Earth.
  • Each extra disk also increases power consumption by up to 12.5%.² Scaled in a data center, where they are running 24/7, this equates to massive spend on just power alone. 

Boosting areal density—now that is efficient.

Essentially this means increasing how much data each disk can hold.

Imagine a 10-disk hard drive, and each disk can hold 3TB of data. In total, you could store 30TB of data on that drive.

Now imagine the same exact drive—but each disk is increased to 3.33TB instead of just 3TB. Now with only 9 disks, you still achieve the same amount of 30TB.

That’s the magic of areal density, resulting in less build material and less power consumption.

See how areal density impacts build and power costs.

Select Target Capacity

Build Savings

Power Savings

Fewer Platters

Areal Density
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Areal density’s impact at scale is profound.

With greater areal density, data centers can:

  • Double their capacity without increasing footprint³
  • Consume 45% less power³
  • Achieve sustainability goals by decreasing consumption of space, power, and natural resources

Seagate is leading the way.

As the world’s only hard drive manufacturer with areal density capabilities of 3TB per disk, with 5TB per disk on the horizon, Seagate is at the helm of a storage revolution. It starts with Mozaic 3+™.

Exos Mozaic 3+™

The proven path to breakthrough areal density is here. Built to enable hyper-efficient, sustainable data storage, Exos mass-capacity hard drives now feature Mozaic 3+, a powerful platform that unleashes areal density of 3TB per disk so that you can store more exabytes in the same space for significantly a lower cost.

  1. IDC StorageSphere. 2024 vs. 2025 install base, IDC Datasphere, 2024 vs. 2025 Incremental New Data Generated.

  2. Based on Exos X24, Max Operating, Random Read/Write 4K/16Q.

  3. Savings calculated per TB. Method: 16TB to 30TB capacity upgrade (or 1.78TB/Disc to 3TB/D) comparing Exos X16 to Exos X 30TB Mozaic drive, max operating power, and weight.