New data transmission record set using a single laser and a single optical chip2022-10-24 17:47 by Daniela
An international group of researchers from Technical University of Denmark (DTU) and Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden have achieved dizzying data transmission speeds of 1.8 petabits per second. That is equivalent to almost twice the global internet traffic per second and is the first in the world to transmit more than 1 petabit per second (Pbit/s) using only a single laser and a single optical chip.
First, the team split the data stream into 37 sections, each of which was sent down a separate core of the fibre-optic cable. Next, each of these channels was split into 223 data chunks that existed in individual slices of the electromagnetic spectrum. This "frequency comb" of equidistant spikes of light across the spectrum allowed data to be transmitted in different colours at the same time without interfering with each other, massively increasing the capacity of each core.
The amount of data sent in the experiment was so vast that no computer exists that could supply or receive this much information so quickly. In experiments, the team instead passed "dummy data" through all channels and tested the output one channel at a time to verify that it was all being sent and could be recovered intact.
But the new chip is far from finished breaking records, according to the team behind it. Using a computational model to scale the data transmission potential of the system, the researchers claim that it could eventually reach eye-watering speeds of up to 100 Pbit/s.
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