Tellurium-based rewritable DVDs

Tellurium-based rewritable DVDs

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Tellurium-based rewritable DVDs. Digital versatile discs (DVDs) are examples of optical discs. An optical disc digitally stores data (such as music or video) as tiny depressions in a plastic disc. This disc is coated with a fine film of metal and then by another layer of plastic. The information is read by a laser light that reflects from the metal layer, allowing the original data to be reconstructed. Rewritable DVDs (DVD-RW) can be erased and rewritten, typically due to the use of a phase change metal alloy such as germanium-antimony-tellurium (GST). This material, incorporating three metalloid elements, can be altered using a laser beam.

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