IBM has unveiled an optical chipset which the company says will transmit upwards of one trillion bits per second - fast enough to transmit 500 high definition movies per second, the company claimed.
The experimental Holey Optochip system was the first optical chipset to crack the Terabit throughput mark. The company estimates that the Holey Optochip will be able to transmit data roughly eight time faster than current optical technologies.
"We have been actively pursuing higher levels of integration, power efficiency and performance for all the optical components through packaging and circuit innovations," said Clint Schow, a researcher with IBM.
"We aim to improve on the technology for commercialisation in the next decade with the collaboration of manufacturing partners."
Optical computing has long been viewed by both engineers and researchers as the eventual successor to conventional hardware platforms which are increasingly taxed to handle data transmission and processing demands.
IBM's Holey Optochip design transmits optical data by way of 48 holes within a conventional silicon chip design. The holes are equally divided to create 24 receiving and 24 transmitting channels.
By using the design, the company believes the chip will allow for record bandwidth loads while maintaining an extremely low energy consumption.
IBM noted that such terabit chips could be used to improve broadband and streaming data performance. The company noted that the speed of the transmitter could serve the bandwidth required by 100,000 users running a 10Mbits/s broadband connection.
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