Andrew Weiner and Daniel Leaird found a way to put a single pulse of light into an arrayed wave guide grating and get a rapid-fire burst of 21 light pulses out of it, with each pulse separated by only two-trillionths of a second. It works similarly to a prism, separating white light by wavelength. The unique properties of the device allow generation of identical, wavelength-shifted pulse trains for communication and photonic signal processing. The discovery could help satisfy demand for increasing network bandwidths. The pair of Purdue University engineers say their device has transmission speeds that are ten times faster than anything currently available. "ISPs are primarily operating at 10 Gbytes/sec per channel, times very many wavelength channels," says Weiner. "Our work can impact higher speed systems, 100 Gbytes/sec per channel and above," he says. Wiener and Laird's idea is to build a module that takes parallel electric data input and converts it into a fast serial optical data stream suitable for fiber transmission. For more information, contact Weiner at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (765) 494-4709.
Siemens and Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology have achieved a faster production process based on selective laser melting for speeding up the prototyping of big, complex metal parts in gas turbine engines.
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