Japanese researchers surpass another data rate with 1.02 petabits per second fiber data transfer

Why is it important: Data rates over fiber optic cables seem to be relatively limited. After all, even light has a speed limit. There isn’t much data that can be squeezed into a lightweight package and run across the line. However, this has not stopped scientists from finding innovative ways to move more and more data.

On Monday, researchers from the Japan National Institute of Information and Communication Technology (NICT) broke another data transfer speed record. recorded 1.02 petabits per second. This speed is 10Tbps faster than the previous high data rate test in December 2020. And that’s more than three times faster than the long-distance test conducted by NICT last June.

To put this into perspective, the researchers indicated that 1.02 Pbps is equivalent to sending 127,500 GB per channel every second, or enough to provide more than “10 million 8K broadcast channels per second.”

What’s more, the researchers say the technique they used is compatible with existing fiber optic infrastructure, albeit modified for higher speeds and parallel transmission. The user cable has four fiber optic strands, rather than one strand like current lines. Despite this difference, data is only transferred in one mode per core, meaning that existing technologies can be modified to receive and read it.

Speeds are further enhanced by “wavelength division multiplexing” (WDM). Using WDM increases throughput up to 20 THz. This tube is divided into 801 wavelength channels in the standard C- and L-bands and the experimental S-band. The team also used new optical amplification and signal modulation technologies to stabilize and enhance the signal.

Although NICT did not mention further testing, judging by the frequency of their testing, it is likely safe to expect another long-range test in about six months. It’s worth noting that last year’s 319 Tbps long-distance communications speed obtained by the team used the same quad-core technology as this one, but with only 13.8 THz throughput. Perhaps next time the team will increase the bandwidth to 20 THz and break another record.

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