Scientists from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory has made a major breakthrough in understanding the structure of ferroelectric materials. The researchers revealed that individual ferroelectric nanoparticles can be used as stable bits of data using a new technique called electron holography. The particles must, however, have at minimum a five nanometer gap between them to prevent fringing electric fields from interfering and corrupting data. The implications of this breakthrough are huge, moving from micrometers, the scale of traditional ferromagnetic storage, to nanometers, the scale of ferroelectric storage. In other words, the discovery could allow engineers to create future electronics that can store multiple terabytes of data on a single square inch.