SNIA announces DNA data storage technology affiliate

The Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) takes another leap forward in the industry by enabling technical work and standards development for interoperability of DNA Data Storage solutions. SNIA is a nonprofit organization made up of storage professionals and is the globally recognized and trusted authority for storage leadership, standards, and technology expertise.

The DNA Data Storage Alliance, a group formed in 2020 by Illumina, Inc., (NASDAQ: ILMN), Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT), Twist Bioscience Corporation (NASDAQ: TWST) and Western Digital (NASDAQ: WDC), has joined SNIA as a Technology Affiliate group, to accelerate its mission to create an interoperable ecosystem for DNA-based data storage solutions. By combining SNIA’s 25 years of experience in open standards development with the expertise and resources of the Alliance membership, the group can immediately jumpstart the standards development for DNA data storage under the established SNIA IP Policy structure.

Digital data stored in DNA has the potential to last reliably for thousands of years with little to no power consumption or need for maintenance, making it a strong contender for long-term archival data storage. The work in this Technology Affiliate aims to standardize interfaces, methods, and best practices to create a global interoperable ecosystem from which both solution providers and clients will benefit. The technical group will develop physical standards, logical and software standards as well as quality standards to ensure the customers get the best solutions.

“Industry work on standards development is a pivotal moment for new technologies,” said Michael Oros, Executive Director at SNIA. “It is the key indicator for multi-vendor investment and support for the technology. This critical step assures adopters of the technology to have broad choice of innovative and interoperable multi-party solutions.”

“Joining SNIA as a Technology Affiliate is taking DNA to the big stage, signaling a maturity of DNA data storage technology and the fact that it is now ready for the next phase of the market evolution,” said Steffen Hellmold, Senior Vice President, Business Development, DNA Data Storage at Twist Bioscience. “Now is the time to build on the growing momentum and scale up the ecosystem to service the projected data storage demand within this decade.”

"With SNIA’s collective expertise, we’ll be creating important standards for DNA data storage practices which will help to accelerate technology development and ultimately enable greater access to DNA as a storage platform," said Craig Ciesla, PhD, Head of Advanced Platforms and Devices at Illumina.

"Interoperability is a critical factor to guide the technology development forward and we are excited to see the DNA data storage ecosystem coming together toward this goal," said Karin Strauss, PhD, Sr. Principal Research Manager at Microsoft. “Microsoft has had a front-row seat along this journey since we started working on DNA data storage research with the University of Washington in 2015, and we look forward to this next phase of development."

“We are excited to combine SNIA’s standards and ecosystem development experience with the Alliance membership and program of work,” said Dave Landsman, Director of Industry Standards at Western Digital, and member of the SNIA Board of Directors. “Western Digital sees DNA-based storage as a compelling technology, which can complement today’s storage solutions to keep pace with today’s dramatically accelerating digitization trends.”

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