New 3M Cartridges Boost Computer Backup Storage

Thanks to the folks at the 3M Camarillo plant, computer users will soon be able to store nearly twice as much data on backup cartridges than they currently can.

The company has added a new cassette to its Travan series of backup cartridges. The new product, due out in mid-November, will be capable of storing up to eight gigabytes (or 8 billion bytes of information). A 15-gigabyte cassette is scheduled for release in 1996.

3M's Travan series, manufactured at the Camarillo plant, was introduced three months ago with a cassette capable of storing 750 megabytes (750 million bites of information). A three gigabyte cassette followed shortly thereafter.

"In January of 1995 we recognized the need to leapfrog over the existing technologies out there," said Bob Michaels, a manufacturing manager at the Camarillo facility.

Travan cartridges are used by inserting them into computer tape drives.

Rick Hunnicutt, owner of All-City Software & Computers in Camarillo, said there is no other backup product on the market that can store as much information as the 3M Travan series.

"It's a new generation in tapes," he said. "Programs are getting larger and larger. People are downloading from the Internet more. They're collecting more data and the data itself is large. A limitation of 200 to 250 megabytes just doesn't cut it anymore."

The Travan cartridges sell for about $25 each at Hunnicutt's store.

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