Science News
from research organizations

Research boosts optical fiber data speeds

Date:
October 16, 2015
Source:
City College of New York
Summary:
In the latest advance to boost the speed of the Internet, a research team has demonstrated a way to increase the data speeds of optical fibers -- considered the Internet's backbone.
Share:
FULL STORY

In the latest advance to boost the speed of the Internet, a research team including, the City College of New York, University of Southern California, University of Glasgow, and Corning Incorporated, has demonstrated a way to increase the data speeds of optical fibers -- considered the Internet's backbone.

"Optical fibers can be sped up by 'twisting' data; multiple data streams are transmitted and received as different twists of light," says Giovanni Milione, a City College doctoral student at the time. "Thought impossible using standard optical fibers which untwist the data, corrupting it, we showed that if the data was digitally re-twisted, after it was received, it could be recovered."

To digitally re-twist the data, the researchers borrowed a well-known technique of radio communication, referred to as 'MIMO,' used by cell phones and Wi-Fi routers every day. "Light's twists were treated like antennas," Milione explains. "Even if transmitted data was untwisted, it was received as a different twist (antenna) and recovered."

As a proof of principal, the researchers successfully transmitted four data streams on four twists of light over 5 kilometers of standard optical fiber. A key to their experiment was a University of Glasgow-made device that separates and combines light's twists as a prism does color.

"This development could offer a solution to the insatiable needs of data-driven social media, such as, Facebook and YouTube, which continually push optical fiber data speed limits," said Distinguished Professor of Physics Robert R. Alfano.


Story Source:

Materials provided by City College of New York. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Hao Huang, Giovanni Milione, Martin P. J. Lavery, Guodong Xie, Yongxiong Ren, Yinwen Cao, Nisar Ahmed, Thien An Nguyen, Daniel A. Nolan, Ming-Jun Li, Moshe Tur, Robert R. Alfano, Alan E. Willner. Mode division multiplexing using an orbital angular momentum mode sorter and MIMO-DSP over a graded-index few-mode optical fibre. Scientific Reports, 2015; 5: 14931 DOI: 10.1038/srep14931

Cite This Page:

City College of New York. "Research boosts optical fiber data speeds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 October 2015. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/10/151016142630.htm>.
City College of New York. (2015, October 16). Research boosts optical fiber data speeds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved May 23, 2017 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/10/151016142630.htm
City College of New York. "Research boosts optical fiber data speeds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/10/151016142630.htm (accessed May 23, 2017).

RELATED STORIES