This is not your father’s Ethernet.
Bell Labs, a subsidiary of Lucent Technologies, has been able to sustain a 100-Gbit signal transmission rate over a long distance, the company reported at this week’s Optical Fibers in Communications conference in Anaheim, Calif. The actual figure was 107 GBits a second, but who’s quibbling? That’s still a fantastic result, considering that it was also a long-distance transmission, exceeding 400 kilometers in physical distance.
The result was achieved using dispersion-compensated fiber and Raman amps and ten-channel electronic multiplexing. An integrated optical equalizer single-chip IC was employed to do the virtual heavy lifting.
The goal, of course, is to forever better transmission speeds while holding the data speed and quality over long distances. After all, you can have an extremely fast connection, but if you can’t hold that connection past your office building or your city block or your town, then why bother? The folks at Bell Labs have done their part, putting together this super-fast signal and sending it through virtual carrier waves over a distance that promises better and wider usability in the future. Once the signal is able to be sustained, it’s only a matter of time and distance before such speed-of-light transmissions are run-of-the-mill.