An worldwide team of researchers used a state-of-the-art optical device coupled with a single infrared laser to transfer 1.8 petabits in a single second, or twice the amount of data transmitted globally for that time on the internet.
Streams of data are converted into light pulses using the binary computer language of ones and zeroes and, where practical, are sent around the world via a web of fiber-optic connections to power our contemporary civilization. A group of researchers from the Technical University of Denmark have smashed the record for the most data transferred in a single second in a recent study that was published in the journal Nature Photonics. The researchers used a specialized optical computer device that could generate hundreds of light frequencies, each of which might contain data, from a single infrared laser. Like the teeth of a comb, these light frequencies are spaced apart by a constant, same distance. This explains why this kind of gadget is referred to as a frequency comb. The amount of data transported was calculated when the researchers sent the light-encoded data down an optical fiber that was 7.9 kilometers long. The chip’s single infrared laser was found to be capable of transmitting data at an astounding pace of 1.84 petabits per second.