Intel claims that it has managed "world record" performance in optical communications using silicon photonics.
According to the journal Nature Photonics, Intel scientists have built slicon photonics-based photo detectors which can send and receive optical information for extreme high-bandwidth applications like supercomputers.
A spokesman for Intel said that silicon photonics were essential for ultra-fast transfer of data in future computers powered by multiple processor cores.
What makes the announcement significant is that the technology is based on silicon rather than anything more exotic and expensive.
So far silicon photonics technology, using complementary metal-oxide semiconductors, has not been as fast.
Mario Paniccia, an Intel Fellow and director of the company's Photonics Technology Lab, said the research is an example of how silicon can be used to create very high-performing optical devices.
It can be used not only in optical communications but areas such as sensing, imaging, quantum cryptography, and biological applications, Paniccia said.
The team has created a silicon-based Avalanche Photodiode which can manage 340 GHz. This is not only the best result ever measured, but will allow cheaper optical links running at data rates of 40Gbps or higher. X
Speed breakthrough nears for silicon photonics