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Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010

Soaking the Solo

We asked Robb Moore, the guy conducting the demo and also CEO of ioSafe, whether the possibility of heat travelling up the USB or eSATA wire from the port was a problem. After all, we thought, that’s a metal connection from the outside of the Solo housing right into the precious storage device held inside. Nope - not much heat travels up the wires as they’re relatively long.

Looks like we'd need to find another weakpoint. Fire won't do it either; the device is protected by a material ioSafe calls 'DataCast', which is packed between the outer casing and the inner armour-plated unit that holds the storage device. DataCast is ‘ an inert, water-based insulation,’ said Moore, adding: ‘The water’s chemically bound inside the insulation, and it only starts to dissipate when the temperature exceeds 160-80 degrees - ([i]Ed: Fahrenheit, as Moore is from the US – water boils at 212 °F). When that happens, the water disengages, and at around the boiling point of water, it starts to steam.'

‘If you remember from high-school chemistry, you can put a pot of boiling water on the stove and hit it with 15 burners and the water won’t get above boiling – it doesn’t matter how much energy you dump in, the water won’t exceed its boiling point. But when all the water’s gone, then you can melt the pot. That’s sort of the same effect inside the ioSafe Solo.[/i]’ As the water disengages from the DataCast material, it steams and is forced via positive internal pressure through the same air vents that allow the hard disk to dissipate heat when in normal operation.

Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo
Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo
Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo
Click to enlarge any picture

The hard disk didn't fare too well during the roasting demo, did it? With the fire demo done, we moved on to the soaking test by literally slinging the Solo SSD into the bucket of a digger. The bucket was then filled with water from a fire hose.

Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo
Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo
Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo Indestructible Data: ioSafe at CES 2010 Soaking the Solo
Click to enlarge any picture

With the Solo SSD thoroughly soaked (it sat in the pool in the digger's bucket for another five minutes of so) we moved onto the next stage of the demo - the drop and crush.