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Georgia Tech demos 25Gbit/s plastic fiber transmission

Posted: 25 May 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:optical components? fiber transmission? surface-emitting laser?

A new vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL) technology from VI Systems aims to extend the reach of cheap plastic fiber optics, with scientists at Georgia Institute of Technology reporting successful operation at 25Gbits per second.

VI Systems in Berlin, on the other hand, also reported that it has achieved 40Gbit/s in the lab and is aiming for 100Gbit/s performance.

Georgia Tech's demonstration used VI Systems' VCSEL at 850nm wavelength, transmitting at 25Gbit/s over a long 100m plastic fiber. This compares to plastic fibers typical use for shorter runs and 650nm wavelengths at speeds up to 1Gbit/s in home networks and as slow as 50Mbit/s for in-car automotive networks. As a result, VI System predicts that these and similar cost-sensitive applications can now boost their performance up to the 40 to 100Gbit/s range.

Georgia Tech reported that its transmission demonstrations were error free over cables with 80 micron core plastic optical fiber using relaxed coupling tolerances as high as 35 microns. In the lab, VI Systems reports speeds up to 40Gbits/s when coupled with high-speed photodetectors and transimpedance amplifiers. ?

Individual VCSELs fit on a 250 micron square die, but can also be obtained from VI Systems in 1by4 or 1by12 arrays for proprietary home and automotive networks, as well as for Fibre Channel, Infiniband and other high-speed applications.

- R. Colin Johnson
??EE Times

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