/>
X
Innovation

Intel: 100Gbps silicon photonics due in May

Intel plans to transfer data at 100Gbps via silicon photonics in a public demonstration in May.This will double the 50Gbps of data transfer via silicon photonics that Intel showed at the Intel Developer Forum (IDF) in September, 2010, Justin Rattner, Intel's chief technology officer, told ZDNet UK on Thursday.
Written by Jack Clark, Contributor on

Intel plans to transfer data at 100Gbps via silicon photonics in a public demonstration in May.

This will double the 50Gbps of data transfer via silicon photonics that Intel showed at the Intel Developer Forum (IDF) in September, 2010, Justin Rattner, Intel's chief technology officer, told ZDNet UK on Thursday.

"We have a 100Gbps link that is coming out in about [May] next year," Rattner said. "We've really perfected the hybrid laser manufacturing process. We can build lasers in volume — that was the challenge."

Intel's silicon photonics efforts have led to the consumer data transfer technology Thunderbolt which, though it pushes data over copper rather than optical fibre, is based on research done through the silicon photonics Light Peak project.

"Most of what we're actually doing today is honing the manufacturing process," Rattner said. "We now have a very rich family of photonic devices in silicon and the big question is, can you produce it in high volume with good reliability? I think in terms of delivering 100Gbps performance and beyond there is no competition we know of right now. There's HP and IBM but [they don't] build lasers on a chip."

Intel's photonics technology works by encoding data into pulses of photons fired from multiple laser beams. This approach differs to that of European researchers who demonstrated 26Tbps via a single laser in May.

Editorial standards