Last week, I wrote about innovative data center designs. This week, some recent advances in optics and the study of light caught my attention. Fiber optic cables carrying 10Gbps are becoming standard in today's production networks, with 25, 40 and 100Gbps gaining traction. This increase in bandwidth works in tandem with advances in software control and visibility of the network right down to the physical layer, in order to play leapfrog with the ever-increasing demands of users and enterprise.
Even in the past two years, we have seen approaches to network architecture change drastically – what will we see in the next two decades, as the technology described below makes its way out of the research lab, and into a data center near you?
Phys.Org | Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation and collaborating labs have demonstrated a 19-core optical fiber which can transmit 114 channels for Peta- to Exa-bit transmission capacity. They fabricated an 8.75 km long optical fiber for evaluation, and project launching practical applications using this fiber design in the 2020’s!
eWeek | Darryl K. Taft has put together an entire slideshow on IBM Research’s quantum computing platform, a system which allows members of the public access to run experiments on the company’s 5-qubit quantum processor. The equipment involved may look oversized for a technology expected to drive the next evolution of Moore’s Law, but keep in mind that the first generation of standard computers took up entire rooms.
Gizmag | While the potential of quantum computing already boggles my mind, research into the quantum properties of light is showing potential avenues for even more powerful approaches in the coming decades. Colin Jeffrey shares a surprisingly digestible description of this new discovery.
Bringing our view back to the present, don’t miss this piece from Fiber Mountain VP of Marketing Bill Miller on the way optical cross-connects and layer 1 switching are not just staging a comeback, but paving the way to more agile network architectures.
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