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by Mike Zazaian September 18, 2006 - 4:02pm, 1 Comment

Triple-standard disc from warner

Warner Brothers is undergoing development of a single-disc Blu-ray, HD-DVD and DVD hybrid as an elegant alternative to packing video stores with three copies of each film.

While Toshiba already as a triple-layer HD-DVD and DVD hybrid in the works, the new disc from Warner Brothers Studios is the first offering to bring Blu-ray functionality to the table.

Designed by top Warner engineers Alan Bell and Lewis Ostrover, the new hybrid disc works by stacking a Blu-ray layer on top of an HD-DVD layer. As both Blu-ray and HD-DVD use a blue laser with a 405-nanometer wavelength to read data, information for each format can be stored in the same medium. However, because Blu-ray data resides 0.1 nanometers beneath the disk surface and HD-DVD data is written at 0.6 nanometers deep, the two types of data can co-exist on the same side of a disc without interference.

The Blu-ray layer, which works like a two-way mirror, is opaque enough to be read by a standard Blu-ray player, but lets enough light through to the underlying HD-DVD layer so that HD-DVD players can read the disc as well. The opposite side of the disc could be used for a standard DVD layer, or, if necessary, another Blu-ray HD-DVD hybrid layer.

There’s no word yet as to when the new discs will be available, but a patent on the technology was filed on August 10th of 2006.

[via NewScientistTech]