Optical Chips Coming in 5 Years

MIT Says Optical Chips Coming in 5 Years

It’s a problem chip manufacturers have known about for some time: As electronic components continue to grow more and more diminutive in size, the metal interconnects between them will soon cease to meet the needed performance criteria that devices demand.This is where optical interconnections—or using light instead of an electrical current as a transmission medium—come into play. Engineers and physicists at MIT have devised a new method for integrating this photonic circuitry onto a silicon chip, a discovery that could soon add the power and speed of light waves to traditional electronics.

In fact, consumers could start to see entirely new devices, systems, and applications in computing and telecommunications that use “optics on a chip” within the next five years, MIT researchers said in a new study published in the Journal of Nature Photonics.

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