Fujitsu has announced two new families in its enterprise hard disk drives.

The MAT family - successors to the MAP series - will be available from April. They have a rotation speed of 10,000 rpm and come in 73GB, 147GB and 300GB sizes. The MAU family - replacing MAS - run at 15,000rpm and come in 36GB, 73GB and 147GB sizes. Both are available with a choice of two interfaces - Ultra320 SCSI or Fibre Channel 2.

The company said that improvements in areal recording density has enabled it to produce the two higher-spec families. It also claims improved reliability. "With the massive increase in transaction and data volumes, today's enterprise servers and storage systems need to deliver greater storage capacities and faster processing speeds," read a company statement. "Moreover, they also need a high level of reliability in order to bolster mission critical transactions. Fujitsu's MAT and MAU product variation with accelerated performance and excellent reliability would capture such Enterprise requirements."

The choice of two interfaces provides system designers with greater flexibility to introduce various enterprise storage environments, whether DAS, NAS or SAN, the company added.

The company's announcement comes about a week after rival Hitachi became the first drive-maker to announce a 300GB, 10,000 rpm drive.

Fujitsu says its MAT 300GB drive has an advantage over the Hitachi model, however, because it uses four disk platters compared to the five used by Hitachi, thanks to Fujitsu's 75Gbits-per-square-inch technology (compared to Hitachi's 61).

"It means lower power consumption, because turning five platters is a 20 percent increase in mass," said Fujitsu's VP of marketing in the US, Joel Hagberg. "Also a lower power consumption means less heat is generated so the drive runs cooler and that will help all components in a system and help reliability. With the higher density you should also see a higher data rate because you have potentially 20 percent more bits on a track."

The average read seek time for the Fujitsu MAT drive is 4.5 milliseconds against 4.7 milliseconds for the Hitachi drive. The average read seek time for the MAU family is 3.2 milliseconds.

The company has yet to release any pricing details.