A prototype optical chipset has been invented by US Based IBM scientists that can transfer data at speeds of up to one terabit per second. Dubbed as ‘Holey Optochip’, it is the first parallel optical transceiver that crossed the data transfer mark of one trillion bits per second, which is equal to 500 HD movies. At the Optical Fiber Communication Conference held in Los Angeles researchers claimed that it is eight times faster than the presently available parallel optical components.
As per their estimates, a single optical transceiver is capable of reaching raw speed equal to bandwidth used by present 100,000 users of standard 10 megabit per second broadband internet access speed. On the basis of their investigation scientists found that optical networking makes it possible to improve data transfers significantly by speeding up the arrival of data through light pulses instead of transmission of electrons over conventional wires.
Technically, after the assembly of 48 optical vias, one for each receiver and transmitter channel the Holey Optochip is transformed from one 90nm IBM CMOS transceiver IC, which comprises 24 transmitters and 24 receiver circuits. With industry standard 850nm VCSEL (vertical cavity surface emitting laser), a 24 channel and photodiode arrays directly soldered to Optochip the transceiver chip measures 5.2mm x 5.8mm only.
According to Clint Schow, IBM researcher, by reaching the one trillion bit per second mark Holey Optochip is the latest milestone of IBM in developing chip scale transceivers, which will be capable of handling the traffic volume in the big data era. The team added that the future computing relies a lot on optical chip technology for facilitating cloud computing, growth of and to serve as drive for future data center applications.