Researchers at the University of Colorado have demonstrated a photonics based approach for communication between components at high speed with a low energy burden.
The bandwidth of photonic circuits is higher because different streams of data can be sent in parallel using different frequencies of light – much higher, in fact, than using electrons on wires. Another advantage of using light is that you can more tightly pack the I/O ports on devices, yielding 10 to 50 times the bandwidth density of current technology.
They've demonstrated a hybrid chip that uses state of the art electronics for processing and photonics for I/O using traditional materials and manufacturing techniques. This should make it possible for current manufacturers to quickly adopt and promote this technology. A couple of startups have been spawned that are working on the technology.
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