This article is from the storage FAQ part1, by Rodney D. Van Meter with numerous contributions by others.
Travan is a 3M trademarked name for a new family of data minicartridge tape media. Travan provides additional capacity via longer length(750' / 229 meters) and greater width(.315" / 8mm) tape then previous generations of data minicartridge. Drives that can accommodate Travan cartridges must have a mechanism that can handle wider tape (.315" / 8mm vs. earlier data minicartridge that are .25"/6.2mm) and be able to accept the slightly larger Travan cartridge. All major drive manufactures have modified existing drives or designed new mechanisms to accommodate the Travan cartridge. Today's Travan capable minicartridge tape drive maintains the industry standard QIC formats. These drives can write and read smaller capacity data minicartridge tapes of the same QIC format family(See below). Travan TR1 capable drive functionality Cartridge Format Capability Native Capacity DC2120 QIC-80 W/R 120MB DC2120XL QIC-80 W/R 170MB QW5122F QIC-80 W/R 208MB TR1(Travan) QIC-80 W/R 400MB Travan TR3 capable drive functionality Cartridge Format Capability Native Capacity DC3010XL QIC3010 W/R 346MB QW3010XLF QIC3010 W/R 425MB DC3020XL QIC3020 W/R 692MB QW3020XLF QIC3020 W/R 850MB TR3(Travan) QIC3020 W/R 1600MB Note 1. TR3 capable drives can read only all combinations of QIC-80 formatted tapes 2. 3M has developed a TR2 800MB QIC3010 format tape but has not gone to market with it at this time 3. There will be TR4 and greater media products in the future. These products will offer greater capacity and performance. (thanks to email@example.com, aug 16 1995)