Over 1 Million Gigabits per Second. What!
The National Institute of Information and Communications (NICT) in Japan said it has transmitted data at a speed of 1.02 petabits per second (Pbs) over a distance of 51.7 kilometers. NICT calls the test a “world’s first.”
A report published by ISP Review notes that in December, 2020, NICT sent data at 1.01 Pbps. It notes that the structures of the demonstrations were quite different. One petabit is equivalent to a million gigabits.
The earlier test used a single core fiber with 15 fiber modes traversed the C + L wavelength bands. The data travelled 23 km, less than half of the latter demonstration. It used 10 THz of transmission bandwidth and had a data rate/spatial channel of 67.3 Terabits per second (Tbs). Multiple-in multiple-out (MIMO) signal processing was used to unscramble the signals. That complex technology adds to cost and development, the story says.
In addition to covering more distance, the latter demonstration utilized simpler 256 QAM instead of MIMO. The data was transmitted on a fiber with a standard cladding diameter of 0.125 millimeters. It featured a four core fiber and a single fiber mode (via the S + C + L bands) for a total of 801 wavelengths. The demonstration harnessed 20 THz of transmission bandwidth, with a data rate/spatial channel of 255 Tbps for each of the cores.
The story contains a quote from the researchers that adds context: “The cable being tested is, according to the research team, “thought to be the most likely of the new advanced optical fibres for early commercial adoption“, which makes this demonstration of their record-breaking capabilities all the more important.”
That’s an important point. The need for increase fiber capability is necessary even in the age of expanding use of Wi-Fi and 5G. The reason is simple: Even though the connection to end users is wireless, these networks rely heavily of fiber-based networks. Therefore, the demonstration on fiber that is likely to become available is significant.
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