Engineers from the UK and Japan set a new record for the fastest Internet in the world. The incredible speed of 178 terabits per second (Tb / s) was transmitted using existing fiber optic networks, but using new ways to model light before transmission.
The feat was made possible thanks to the research team led by Dr. Lidia Galdino, from UCL (University College London), in partnership with Xtera and KDDI Research. As stated in the publication, at this speed it is possible to “download the entire Netflix library in less than a second”.
The record is also impressive for the method in which it was conducted. They were able to increase data transmission using a much wider range of light colors (wavelengths), which is normally used in fiber optic networks.
With this, it was possible to reach a bandwidth of 16.8 THz (Terahertz). This is twice the limited spectrum for commercial broadband systems, which can reach 9 THz. The method also involved the development of new Geometric Shape (GS) constellations. These patterns combine signals that alter the phase, brightness and polarization of the light / wavelength.
As a benefit, the researchers cite that the technique can be implemented in an existing infrastructure. It would be necessary, for example, to update the amplifiers in the fiber optic routes in radii of 40-100 km. For comparison, it is said that the upgrade would cost around £ 16,000, while a new fiber optic installation can cost up to £ 450,000 per kilometer.
“While current cloud data center interconnections … are capable of transporting up to 35 Tb / s, we are working with new technologies that more efficiently use existing infrastructure,” said Dr. Galdino.
Another example given by the researchers is that, at this speed, it would take less than an hour to download all the data that made up the first image of a black hole.