British-American physicist Stuart Parkin has won the 1 million-euro (USD 1.3 million) Millennium Technology Prize for discoveries leading to a thousand-fold increase in digital data storage on magnetic disks.

Mr. Parkin was recognized for discoveries used to increase data storage capacities. His work has been utilized for magnetic disk drives used to store large data centres and cloud services, as well as social networks and online music and film distribution, according to the Technology Academy, Finland. “Mr. Parkin’s innovations may pave the way to a totally new era in computing with dramatically increased capacity and reduced power consumption,” said Juha Yla—Jaaski, president of Technology Academy Finland.

The academy is an independent foundation established by Finnish industry and the Finnish state. Mr. Parkin, born 1955 in Watford, England, earned a doctorate at Cambridge University in 1981. He later worked for IBM.

Last year he was given a five-year Alexander von Humboldt professorship to conduct research in Germany. He is based in Halle as professor at the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg and director of the Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics.

Parkin is to receive the award on May 7 at a ceremony in the Finnish capital, Helsinki. Orgnizers said 45 nominations had been made for the 2014 award.

The prize was created in 2004 and is awarded every two years. The first winner was Tim Berners—Lee, the inventor of the worldwide web.

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