Researchers at Oregon State University have designed and fabricated the world’s smallest electro-optic modulator, which could mean major reductions in energy used by data centers and supercomputers.
An electro-optic modulator plays the key role in fiber optic networks. Just as a transistor is a switch for electronic signals, an electro-optic modulator is a switch for optical signals. Optical communication uses light, so the modulator turns on and off the light that sends a stream of binary signals over optical fibers.
The new modulator is 10 times smaller and can potentially be 100 times more energy efficient than the best previous devices. It is roughly the size of a bacterium, measuring 0.6 by 8 microns.
“This is by far the most exciting research I have ever done because of the impact the device will bring and because of the challenge it was for design and fabrication,” said Alan Wang, associate professor of electrical engineering in the OSU College of Engineering.
The paper was published by Nano Letters.
For their invention, Wang and his doctoral student, Erwen Li, leveraged technology also developed at Oregon State: transparent conductive oxide materials. The structure they invented uses a transparent conductive oxide gate instead of a typical metal gate to combine a metal-oxide semiconductor capacitor with an ultra-compact photonic crystal nanocavity.
The design, combining innovations in materials and devices, enhanced the interaction between electronics and photonics, which enabled the researchers to create a smaller electro-optic modulator.
Wang had consulted his colleagues in industry about whether he was on the right track for developing something they could use.
“They told me reducing the size and reducing the energy consumption is going to be the trend in the next five to 10 years in industry. So this is exactly the kind of device they’re looking for,” Wang said.
The Latest on: Energy consumption
via Google News
The Latest on: Energy consumption
- UK retail energy firm Octopus to launch in Germanyon November 23, 2020 at 11:15 pm
Britain's Octopus Energy on Tuesday announced plans to supply retail power customers in Germany, home to big established utilities but is open to newcomers.
- ‘Back to normal’ stocks trade: Energy shares on Chris Wood’s radar as normalcy gets closeron November 23, 2020 at 9:37 pm
With two vaccines now claiming to be more than 94% effective the return of normalcy is closer than ever before.
- Satellite imagery used for electricity consumption forecasting in Africa for the first time in new serviceon November 23, 2020 at 9:21 pm
The Electricity Consumption Prediction service for Africa has been launched today by the e-GUIDE Initiative. The service, which will be freely available, provides estimates of future electricity ...
- Pipe dreams leave U.S. energy firms caught in climate trapon November 23, 2020 at 5:33 pm
Now the future of the Enbridge Inc owned line supplying the region is under threat, as climate activists widen their campaign to cut U.S. fossil fuel dependency from new pipelines to the refurbishment ...
- So You Hate Energy Transfer's Management Team, Now Whaton November 23, 2020 at 4:57 pm
Energy Transfer's management team is incredibly unpopular, mostly due to its lack of commitment to long-term shareholder returns.
- Cameroon Energy Requirements Forecasts to 2050 and the Impact of COVID-19 on Energy Production and Consumption - ResearchAndMarkets.comon November 23, 2020 at 3:09 am
ResearchAndMarkets.com The "Cameroon Requirements Forecasted to 2050" report has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com's offering. This report looks at the outlook for Cameroon energy requirements from ...
- Atos Announces New HPC Software Suites to Optimize Performance, Reduce Energy Consumptionon November 19, 2020 at 10:26 am
Atos today announces its new scalable, open, robust and secure HPC Software Suites to enable users to effectively manage their ...
- Ghana Energy Requirements, Forecast to 2050 - Extensive Analysis of COVID-19's Impact on Energy Production & Consumptionon November 19, 2020 at 1:53 am
The "Ghana Energy Requirements Forecasted to 2050" report has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com's offering. The scope outlook for this report is from 2020 to 2050 integrating all end-user energy ...
- Scientists develop a magnetic switch with lower energy consumptionon November 18, 2020 at 7:15 am
Joint research conducted by the UAB has shown the ability to switch magnetizacion « on » and « off » using voltage in a new class of easy-to-fabricate materials containing nitrogen. These results, ...
via Bing News