The data transmission speed record has just been broken. Using a single light source and a single optical chip, scientists transmitted data at a blistering 1.84 petabits per second (Pbit/s). That’s nearly double the world’s internet traffic in a second.
Transmitting almost twice the world’s Internet traffic in one second in a single strand of optical fiber is the prowess that have just been carried out by scientists from the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) and the Polytechnic School of Chalmers in Sweden. During their experiments, the maximum speed recorded was 1.84 petabits per second, or 1.84 million gigabits. When in the best case you can benefit from a few megabits per second, it’s more than an achievement. Even better, to establish this record, the researchers used only one light source and only one optical chip. To achieve this insane speed, the infrared laser beam is transmitted to this chip which will separate the light into hundreds of different frequencies. The amplitude, phase and polarization of the light are used to encode the data. The whole is recombined into a single beam sent via the fiber.
Around 100 petabits per second
In all, 223 wavelength channels with 37 separate cores were operated on an optical fiber nearly eight kilometers long. Last May, the record was 1.02 Pbit/s, which was already colossal, when we know that we peaked at 178 terabits per second in August 2020. With the same process, on a single optical fiber , the performance was also 44.2 terabits per second a few months earlier. This record should not hold for long, since the team of scientists explains in its study that with a well-optimized algorithm, it would be possible to increase the potential to reach 100 Pbit/s. With such throughput capacities for an identical infrastructure, the high-tech sector could enormously reduce its energy consumption. We would then be well beyond the absurd recommendations for cleaning e-mail boxes to reduce the energy bill of the high-tech sector.