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Data Storage Power

Erasing CDs By Using 150,000 Volts of Electricity 242

ryzvonusef writes "One enterprising individual has created the most secure way to wipe out Compact Discs, by using a step-up transformer and creating a 150,000 Volt pd, whilst a CD rotates in the middle. The sparks arc through the metal in the CD and evaporates it, ripping it all off as the CD rotates. The CD is rendered transparent and unreadable. This may be the most secure method to remove data on conventional recordable CDs used in offices."

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Erasing CDs By Using 150,000 Volts of Electricity

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  • by Kazymyr ( 190114 ) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @05:44PM (#35874026) Journal

    I've done it dozens of times. My 13-year-old cheapo microwave oven didn't bat a lid. Still going strong.

    I think the "easy to damage the microwave" is an urban legend. Someone should submit it to Mythbusters.

  • by Zorpheus ( 857617 ) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @05:47PM (#35874084)
    Of course you can not read a CD if the reflective metal layer is removed. But the data is stored in tiny pits that are printed into the polycarbonate layer. If the polycarbonate is not damaged too much, the CD might be readable when a new metal layer is applied.
  • The thinking goes, the magnetron is basically an antenna, right? So it can pick up as well as transmit energy. If an electric charge builds up and arcs stright into the magnetron, it can blow up. Or something like that. I've never seen it happen, and I've blown up a lot of stuff in microwaves over the years.

    A quick google search for "blow up the magnetron" turned up this answer from a microwave engineer:

    2. metals in the microwave oven - they will not destroy the oven or cause it to blow up. I routinely heat my coffee with a spoon in the cup. I also did the definitive early research on this in the late 70's and early 80's. But it is possible for metals to arc (spark) under certain conditions. This can be dangerous especially with things like metal twist ties and steel wool. Also, things like the metal trim (silver or gold) around the rims of fine china is dangerous in that the dish or cup can easily beak or shatter - but this due to the trim not being perfectly continuous like a wire that would carry current, Instead the trim has microscopic gaps and that can cause micro-arcs and temperatures exceeding 1000 F locally.

    Don't you just love the Internet? We get to be wrong more often, but not for as long.

All laws are simulations of reality. -- John C. Lilly