Home » Emerging technologies » DNA-based Data Storage and Computation Provider CATALOG, Founded by MIT Scientists, Raises $10 Million

DNA-based Data Storage and Computation Provider CATALOG, Founded by MIT Scientists, Raises $10 Million

BOSTON, Sept. 09, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — CATALOG, the world’s first DNA-based platform for massive digital data storage and computation, today announced it has secured $10 million in Series A funding and named David Turek CTO.

Horizons Ventures led this current oversubscribed round, joined by Airbus Ventures, and the investment will be used to fund early product trials and continued Research and Development. In total, CATALOG has raised $21M through additional investors, including NEA, OS Fund, Data Collective, AME Cloud, and SOSV, among others.

CATALOG addresses challenges facing data-intensive industries. According to a recent report, the amount of data created, captured, and replicated every year will grow to over 175 zettabytes by 2025, up from 33 zettabytes today. While the cost of traditional storage has been declining, the average enterprise storage system lifespan is less than five years, and storage density capability isn’t keeping pace with the explosive data growth.

Founded in 2016 by MIT scientists, CATALOG is the first company to develop a commercially viable solution that uses a data storage medium as old as life itself, DNA. DNA as a storage device is orders of magnitude smaller and denser than standard drives will ever be. A football field’s worth of storage capacity—or over one billion gigabytes of data—can fit into a sugar cube size container of DNA and remain stable for thousands of years.

CATALOG, in collaboration with Cambridge Consultants in the UK, developed an innovative device using technology similar to inkjet printers to convert the zeros and ones used to store binary data in traditional storage into a combination of pre-synthesized DNA molecules. This technology can hold a million times more data in the same volume of magnetic and solid-state media. CATALOG’s custom-developed DNA writer and data storage system, Shannon, can write at a speed of over 10 Mb/sec and generates over a trillion identifiers in a single run. It can store up to 1.63Tb of compressed data in a single run. An entire warehouse of storage can be replaced by Shannon, which can fit into a family size kitchen.

CATALOG recently demonstrated its technology by storing the full English text version of Wikipedia into synthetic DNA molecules. A total of 16 gigabytes of data was stored, which is significantly more data than ever previously captured into DNA.

“At Airbus Ventures, we aim to invest in frontier technologies that amplify disruptive opportunities across multiple technology sectors simultaneously. Hyunjun and his team are revolutionizing data storage and computation to meet acute needs for advanced, long-term storage capabilities essential to a growing number of industries,” said Airbus Ventures Partner Nicole Conner.  Dr. Lewis Pinault, Airbus Ventures Partner and head of their Asia Pacific region adds, “The transformative impact that Catalog will have on computation and storage can have particularly significant impact on deep space exploration strategies, where not only the sheer quantity of data but also the need for autonomous action in the face of immense complexity compel radically new solutions to complement and reach beyond quantum capabilities.”

Dave Turek Named CTO
David Turek brings more than 25 years of executive experience to CATALOG. Turek joins CATALOG from IBM, where he held several executive positions leading the company’s high-performance computing strategy. Turek led the commercialization of the IBM Deep Blue Supercomputer, which defeated world chess champion Garry Kasparov, spearheaded programs to create the world’s most powerful supercomputers, including Roadrunner and Blue Gene, and launched innovative business models around open source for high-performance computing. Several times in his career, Turek has testified to the United States Congress on the future of computing in the US and has helped establish technical collaborations with universities, businesses, and government agencies worldwide. As CTO, Turek will be responsible for technical strategy, business development, and collaborations.

“David Turek’s skills experience in commercializing emerging technologies are coming to CATALOG at the right time,” said CATALOG CEO and Co-founder Hyunjun Park. “Our proven DNA-based storage and computational technology are set to change how the world views processing and storing data. While we have demonstrated the utility of DNA for data storage, an intriguing aspect of our work is determining how we can leverage the scalability and parallelism intrinsic to DNA for solving complex compute problems. Turek and the new capital will play a critical role in commercializing this technology to a wide set of users.”

“CATALOG developed a scientific solution to a technology problem,” said Dave Turek, CTO, CATALOG. “Converting binary code to synthetic DNA changed the game for data-intensive industries. We believe this is just the beginning as we vigorously push towards product commercialization.”

Founded in 2016 by MIT scientists, CATALOG is the first company to have developed a solution to make DNA data storage commercially viable. Humanity is generating more data than there is a means to store or compute using traditional technologies, and that growth is exploding exponentially. CATALOG’s DNA data storage solution is more reliable, sustainable, and transferable than conventional data storage methods, and could fit the entirety of the world’s data into a coat closet. The computational platform will extract value from previously unstorable data. The company is based in Boston. For more information about CATALOG, visit ​www.catalogdna.com​.

Ron Favali
The Message Garage

Source: https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/09/09/2090846/0/en/DNA-based-Data-Storage-and-Computation-Provider-CATALOG-Founded-by-MIT-Scientists-Raises-10-Million.html


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