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A team of researchers in Australia has recorded the fastest internet speed in the world using an optical chip that is the size of a fingernail.
According to the researchers, they recorded a speed of 44.2 terabits per second, which is enough to download over a thousand high-definition movies in less than a second. The team was able to pull this off by replacing around 80 lasers with a single soliton crystal micro-comb, which is a type of optical chip.
For this study, the researchers placed the chip onto fiber-optic cables laid over a 76.6-kilometer area between RMIT University Melbourne Campus and Monash University Clayton Campus. After testing the system’s performance, the researchers found that it was able to achieve a speed one hundred times faster than that of any single fiber network device in Australia.
Professor David Moss, one of the study’s authors, said that this development is an enormous breakthrough for the fiber-optic network industry, especially now that the demand for the internet has skyrocketed.
Aside from enhancing internet infrastructures around the world, the team believes that the new optical chip will also help revolutionize other industries, including transportation, e-commerce, medicine, and education.
The chip can be created using the same fabrication processes for manufacturing commercially available computer chips. With this development, the researchers expect the production of the new technology to scale up quickly.