New Paper Describes Next-gen Ultralow-Power Optical Interconnects

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silicon photonicsMIT Technology Review has posted details on a new generation of ultralow power optical interconnects.

Today Michael Watts and pals at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge say they’ve designed and built the first photonic modulator that operates at this ultralow power level. “We propose, demonstrate, and characterize the first modulator to achieve simultaneous high-speed (25 Gigabits per second), low voltage (0.5 peak-to-peak Voltage) and efficient 1 femtoJoule per bit error-free operation,” they say. The new device is a hollow silicon cylinder that acts as a cavity for trapping light waves. It modulates this light thanks to a phenomenon known as the electro-optic effect in which the refractive index of silicon can be changed by modifying the voltage across it.

Read the Full Story or Download the Paper: A One FemtoJoule Athermal Silicon Modulator.